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How to Become an Intellectual
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How to Become an Intellectual

3.54  ·  Rating details ·  52 Ratings  ·  15 Reviews

#1: Carry a Scholarly Book (at All Times)
#12: Know Your Manet from Your Monet
#14: Be Proficient in at Least One Classical Instrument
#64: Learn to Recite Romantic-Era Poetry on Cue

If you think you need a PhD in Greek and Roman philosophy from an Ivy League school to call yourself an intellectual, reconsider your supposition. While you may envy the initials that f
Paperback, First, 240 pages
Published April 1st 2012 by Adams Media (first published January 1st 2012)
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Jul 07, 2012 rated it it was amazing
How to Become an Intellectual - 100 Mandatory Maxims is a must read. This refreshing take on intellectuals features belly laughs on each page along with morsels of truth and great advice! If you'd like to know which books to carry around to make you look smart, or which operas you should familiarize yourself with, look no further. I've greatly enjoyed reading Nick Kolakowski's views on appearing intellectual to peers - what kind of jokes to tell, what type of internet signature to have, how to s ...more
Jul 24, 2012 rated it it was amazing
As a reader who personifies a lot of the features mentioned in this book, a lot of the things that Kolakowski mentions hit awfully close to the point where I'm not quite sure at times whether the author is seriously recommending that I do these things, or that he's parodying these features as things that intellectuals are SUPPOSED to do. But I think that very truth is what makes this book so effective. It's able to be serious but not TOO serious, exacting but not overbearing, intellige ...more
Abigail Advincula
Mar 27, 2015 rated it liked it
It's the premise that drew me in - what are the characteristics or quirks that society associates with intelligence?

I dove into the book quickly. I read the first twenty or so pages very quickly and enjoyed it. It was a quick and witty read ... at first. About 50 pages in, the book started getting repetitive. I mean, the book is practically all stereotypes. Maybe the book would have been better titled How to Convince Everyone Else You Are an Intellectual. While I enjoyed the book, I wouldn't rec
Zachary Gorelick
Jun 15, 2015 rated it really liked it
I highly enjoyed this book for multiple reasons. Of course, there's no question that this is largely satire, a comment on the clichéd and superficial stereotypes surrounding the intellectual. It's also, however, a bit of a shout out to everyone who has ever been stigmatized for their intellectual pursuits. Lastly, though, it is actually chock full of great tips for anyone who is interested in broadening their mind's horizons. It's a fun read, it definitely pokes a great deal of jest at the profe ...more
Came across this book in a serendipitous way. Started reading. The author has given 100 maxims but I think nearly fifty percent are in jest. There are some good maxims like saying 'i dont know', list of books one must read and also a short list of five directors one must watch. Short and passable read.
Nov 07, 2013 rated it really liked it
Absolutely concise and informative. I believe the only draw back is that the author is much more concerned about how you're perceived as an intellectual as opposed to just being an intellectual regardless of who's watching.
Nov 06, 2014 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Very fun book with lots of witty moments and not a few opportunities for profound pause. Recommended.
Jun 14, 2015 rated it liked it
Decent advice.
May 01, 2014 rated it it was ok
Shelves: 2014, oyster
Some parts of this book were really funny, and it wasn't badly written. It was a book I chose to read on a whim, and when that whim passed, it was hard to keep reading.
Jun 12, 2012 rated it liked it
Funny, tongue-in-cheek look at what it means to be an 'intellectual.'
Aug 16, 2015 rated it really liked it
Both helpful and humorous, would recommend to anyone hoping to become their best intellectual self.
Simon Bruce
Sep 24, 2015 rated it liked it
Shelves: my-library
Got through this in a couple of hours, it's an ok book, which is padded out with some pointless crap, worth a read.
Oct 03, 2013 rated it liked it
Generally a good idea but unfortunately often not very well implemented. Very funny at times. Generally interesting but falls far behind what I had hoped for. Okay for a fun read...
Mar 15, 2014 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2014
A very entertaining read.
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Jun 28, 2012
Chris Qu
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Otsile Modiselle
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Mar 12, 2013
Christopher Zara
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Jul 27, 2014
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Sep 26, 2012
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May 28, 2014
Sandeep Satish
Oct 15, 2014 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Fun to read. Insightful, but not serious enough in exploring the intellectual's life and qualities
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Nick Kolakowski's work has appeared in The Washington Post, McSweeney's, Washington City Paper, Playboy, LOST magazine, Trader Monthly, WebMD, and eWeek, among other venues. He lives in Brooklyn, NY.
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