Alan's Reviews > A Great Idea at the Time: The Rise, Fall, and Curious Afterlife of the Great Books

A Great Idea at the Time by Alex Beam
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's review
Nov 16, 2009

it was ok
bookshelves: education, books-about-books
Read in November, 2009

A kind of snarky and condescending look back at "middlebrow" culture and people and libraries talked into buying the great books set and never opening them. Admittedly, I never read Tristram Shandy but I read some or all of most volumes, including Apollonious, ridiculed in this text, Ptolemy, Harvey, Darwin, and other supposedly unreadable science books. Fie! I'm not that impressed with Adler or Hutchins, and the Syntopicon never did a thing for me -- but reading Apology and Crito at age 12, that was something.

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