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Why Teach? : In Defense of a Real Education
We rarely discuss college anymore without bringing up its exorbitant price tag. Is there an education bubble? Is a bachelor's degree worth the investment? If you didn't know better, you'd think universities were only available to us on the stock market.
What ever happened to the actual human souls who do the teaching and learning these institutions are rumored to promote?
Mark Edmundson, a renowned professor of English at the University of Virginia, has considered the personal meaning of education his whole career. His prose, exacting yet expansive, tough-minded yet optimistic, is that rare breed that reminds us that reading matters after all. He has been writing on this important subject for decades, sometimes in book form and other times in essays that have run in places like Harper's, the New York Times, and the Chronicle of Higher Education.
Here Edmundson's writings on the subject are collected, including several that are new and unpublished elsewhere. What they show, collectively, is that higher learning is not some staid old notion but necessary medicine for our troubled modern selves. Edmundson enlivens his topic, putting parents back in the classrooms perhaps inhabited by their children. His carefully chosen words are filled with the wisdom and inspiration that make learning possible. This book is a must-read for any teacher, or student, and a refreshing reminder to parents.
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Bloomsbury Publishing USA
August 20, 2013
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