- Hardcover: 480 pages
- Publisher: W. W. Norton & Company; Updated and Expanded edition (November 16, 2015)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 039308096X
- ISBN-13: 978-0393080964
- Product Dimensions: 6.5 x 1.6 x 9.6 inches
- Shipping Weight: 1.6 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
- Average Customer Review: 4.1 out of 5 stars See all reviews (134 customer reviews)
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #31,211 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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The Well-Educated Mind: A Guide to the Classical Education You Never Had (Updated and Expanded) Updated and Expanded Edition
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“A useful resource for highly self-motivated readers.” (Kirkus Reviews)
“Bauer has crafted a timeless, intelligent book…. A well-balanced, long-lasting reading program…. A brilliant guide on to how to analyze any given literary work―even if it’s not on Bauer’s list.” (Publishers Weekly)
“A clear guide to educating oneself in the liberal arts through disciplined, critical reading of literary classics.” (Library Journal)
“Written in a straightforward style accessible to most students, this readable book provides solid, step-by-step advice on how to read some of the world’s great books with discipline and comprehension.” (School Library Journal)
About the Author
Susan Wise Bauer is the best-selling author of the Story of the World series, The History of the World series, The Well-Trained Mind, and The Well-Educated Mind, among other works. She lives in Virginia.
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Top Customer Reviews
In addition to laying out the groundwork for setting up a self-study program, Bauer provides a detailed approach to each of her recommended readings, from "The Epic of Gilgamesh, c. 2000 B.C. to Elie Wiesel's "All Rivers Run to the Sea", 1995.
A warning however for the "undisciplined mind". Unless you are prepared to commit the necessary time (Bauer recommends 30 minutes a day, 4 days a week) to do some "really serious reading" using a personalized "commonplace book" (which she describes in detail) to record your learnings and critiques -- you are wasting your time. It's akin to losing 25 pounds through disciplined dieting or getting out of debt in 12 months through focused efforts. You either commit yourself to a life-long learning plan to raise your consciousness and self-awarness or simply go back and waste away by watching T.V. and munching on your doritos. The choice is yours.
Now, FINALLY, thanks to this book, I am learning how to read a book and analyze it using the 3 stages of the Trivium (grammar stage, logic stage, rhetoric stage) -- Classical Education. My friend and I are having a ball learing how to do this, taking notes, analyzing things logically, asking questions and discussing the finer points that the author makes.
For anyone who is homeschooling (as my friend and I are), or for anyone who feels like their understanding of fine literature is lacking, this book is wonderful!! I highly recommend it! It has an easily readable style, (not dry as wood chips like some books I have attempted), has a sprinkling of humor here and there, and best of all, it respects that fact that the majority of people who would be reading it are busy adults with PLENTY to do each day, and is therefore not demanding; it only requires 30 min. of reading a day 4 times a week, thus making an allowance for those days that "life" happens to you.
Side note: between my friend and I, the oldest homeschool child we have is approximately 7th grade. Therefore, we did not begin by reading the books that the author recommends. We chose classical literature that was closer to the level that the oldest child was reading and books that we knew we would have our children read on their own at some point. We both plan to use what we learn from this book to help show our own children how to read and evaluate good literature.
Highly recommended for any serious reader.