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Analyzes the art of reading and suggests ways to approach literary works
Readers in the sixteenth century read (that is, interpreted) texts quite differently from the way contemporary readers do; they were trained to notice different aspects of a text and to process them differently. Using educational works of Erasmus, Ascham, and others, commentaries on literary works, various kinds of religious guides and homilies, and self-improvement books, Kintgen has found specific evidence of these differences and makes imaginative use of it to draw fascinating and convincing conclusions about the art and practice of reading. Kintgen ends by situating the book within literary theory, cognitive science, and literary studies. Among the writers covered are Gabriel Harvey, E. K. (the commentator on The Shepheardes Calendar), Sir John Harrington, George Gascoigne, George Puttenham, Thomas Blundeville, and Angel Day.
CNN host and best-selling author Fareed Zakaria argues for a renewed commitment to the world’s most valuable educational tradition. The liberal arts are under attack. The governors of Florida, Texas, and North Carolina have all pledged that they will not spend taxpayer money subsidizing the liberal arts, and they seem to have an unlikely ally in President Obama. While at a General Electric plant in early 2014, Obama remarked, "I promise you, folks can make a lot more, potentially, with skilled manufacturing or the trades than they might with an art history degree." These messages are hitting home: majors like English and history, once very popular and highly respected, are in steep decline. "I get it," writes Fareed Zakaria, recalling the atmosphere in India where he grew up, which was even more obsessed with getting a skills-based education. However, the CNN host and best-selling author explains why this widely held view is mistaken and shortsighted. Zakaria eloquently expounds on the virtues of a liberal arts education—how to write clearly, how to express yourself convincingly, and how to think analytically. He turns our leaders' vocational argument on its head. American routine manufacturing jobs continue to get automated or outsourced, and specific vocational knowledge is often outdated within a few years. Engineering is a great profession, but key value-added skills you will also need are creativity, lateral thinking, design, communication, storytelling, and, more than anything, the ability to continually learn and enjoy learning—precisely the gifts of a liberal education. Zakaria argues that technology is transforming education, opening up access to the best courses and classes in a vast variety of subjects for millions around the world. We are at the dawn of the greatest expansion of the idea of a liberal education in human history.
“Scott Hartley artfully explains why it is time for us to get over the false division between the human and the technical.” —Tim Brown, CEO of IDEO and author of Change by Design Scott Hartley first heard the terms fuzzy and techie while studying political science at Stanford University. If you majored in humanities or social sciences, you were a fuzzy. If you majored in computer or hard sciences, you were a techie. While Silicon Valley is generally considered a techie stronghold, the founders of companies like Airbnb, Pinterest, Slack, LinkedIn, PayPal, Stitch Fix, Reddit, and others are all fuzzies—in other words, people with backgrounds in the liberal arts. In this brilliantly counterintuitive book, Hartley shatters assumptions about business and education today: learning to code is not enough. The soft skills—curiosity, communication, and collaboration, along with an understanding of psychology and society’s gravest problems—are central to why technology has value. Fuzzies are the instrumental stewards of robots, artificial intelligence, and machine learning. They offer a human touch that is of equal—if not greater—importance in our technology-led world than what most techies can provide. For anyone doubting whether a well-rounded liberal arts education is practical in today’s world, Hartley’s work will come as an inspiring revelation. Finalist for the 2016 Financial Times/McKinsey Bracken Bower Prize A Financial Times Business Book of the Month
A founder of the "great books" movement addresses the controversy concerning what should be required study in schools and suggests a humanistic course of study that is accessible to all people
In a world where the value of a liberal arts education is no longer taken for granted, Mark William Roche lucidly and passionately argues for its essential importance. Drawing on more than thirty years of experience in higher education as a student, faculty member, and administrator, Roche deftly connects the broad theoretical perspective of educators to the practical needs and questions of students and their parents. Roche develops three overlapping arguments for a strong liberal arts education: first, the intrinsic value of learning for its own sake, including exploration of the profound questions that give meaning to life; second, the cultivation of intellectual virtues necessary for success beyond the academy; and third, the formative influence of the liberal arts on character and on the development of a sense of higher purpose and vocation. Together with his exploration of these three values—intrinsic, practical, and idealistic—Roche reflects on ways to integrate them, interweaving empirical data with personal experience. Why Choose the Liberal Arts? is an accessible and thought-provoking work of interest to students, parents, and administrators.

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