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13 of 14 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars An entertaining and attractive family album, November 26, 2012
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This review is from: The Ivy League (Hardcover)
It may be true, as Daniel Cappello notes in the introduction to this attractive and useful book, that "schools outside the Ivy League, including the so-called 'Ivy Plus' universities (such as Stanford, Duke, the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, and the University of Chicago), actually provide a more rigorous scholastic experience than their Ivy counterparts." Nevertheless, the Ivy League, he argues, retains "an unquantifiable distinction factor that eludes empirical educational value and worth. ... To some extent, the old-school idea of the Ivy League continues to define it, and is one that Ivy Leaguers still cling to. It is also one that looms large in the popular imagination." It's this "old-school idea," the "unquantifiable distinction factor," that Cappello attempts to define for the Ivy League colleges. He paints what struck me, as admitted outsider who's paid but brief visits to only three of these campuses, as fine individual portraits of eight very different schools, yet also shows what they have in common -- what sets "what might be seen as one of the most successful and singularly American brands" apart from other schools.

Cappello starts with the Big Three: Harvard ("the Ivy's Ivy"), Yale ("the classic Ivy"), and Princeton ("the preppy Ivy"). He then moves on to Brown ("the hip Ivy"), Dartmouth ("the rugged Ivy"), Columbia ("the urbane Ivy"), Penn ("the entrepreneurial Ivy"), and finally Cornell ("the Ivy for every man"). Each chapter is colorfully illustrated with an assortment of historic and contemporary images, including campus landscapes, portraits of alumni and current students, and classic athletic programs. His text not only describes each school's history, but also its current character and distinctiveness. Among the topics I found particularly interesting were his discussion of Brown as what someone else described as "the daycare center of the Democratic Party" and preferred school of Hollywood and Euro-elites; Columbia's close ties to neighboring Harlem; and the "discreet, almost philosophical nonchalance" of Yale and its students. Readers who, like me, are interested in the "Ivy League" style of dress, and have studied relevant books like Ivy Style: Radical Conformists, Take Ivy, or The Ivy Look: Classic American Clothing - An Illustrated Pocket Guide will be pleased to know that Cappello hasn't stinted in this area -- particularly in the chapters on Yale and Princeton.

Again, though, I return to the beautiful photos. This could easily be described as an Ivy League photo album, and you could certainly browse it as such. But then you'd miss the very good writing that goes along with the colorful and well-chosen images, and that would be a shame.
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3 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Beautiful book, September 3, 2013
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This review is from: The Ivy League (Hardcover)
I was pleasantly surprised by this book. It is a brief treatment of each of the Ivy League schools that focuses on each school's distinctive qualities. My alma mater (Pennsylvania) is often either overlooked or ill-regarded due to the dominance of its professional schools, so it was nice to see a fair treatment of Penn that praised the University for her unique qualities. This book is well-written and contains some beautiful photographs. I would highly recommend Mr. Cappello's book to any Ivy League alumnus.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars, August 26, 2014
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This review is from: The Ivy League (Hardcover)
great condition
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1 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The Ivy League, September 9, 2012
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This review is from: The Ivy League (Hardcover)
A lovely book!Well written and with great pictures.It has expanded my knowledge about the eight Ivy Universities. What a great idea to write a book about this subject! It certainly makes a great gift.
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2 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Fun and Non-Snobby Look at the Ivys, December 14, 2012
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This review is from: The Ivy League (Hardcover)
I was pleasantly surprised with the survey of all the Ivy League schools in this amazingly attractive book.

Going to Brown and teaching at Columbia makes this book fun to read. My last sentence ( <- ) was more snobby than the book is. I recommend it to anyone interested in the Ivys, especially for parents thinking about sending their high schooler to an Ivy upon graduation.
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1 of 5 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Nice coffee table book, February 13, 2013
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This review is from: The Ivy League (Hardcover)
This was a gift for my fiancé. He seemed very happy with book. It now sits on a table in our living room for and is an interesting conversation piece.
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The Ivy League
The Ivy League by Daniel Cappello (Hardcover - March 27, 2012)
$65.00 $43.82
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