Monday, January 11, 2010
The Well-Educated Mind
I've noticed that quite a few bloggers are talking about reading deliberately is one of their goals for this year. When I started Mrs. Dalloway, I was rushing through it and realized I seemed to be missing something, and decided to refresh my memory about modernism and stream of consciousness to see if that helped me read below the surface a bit. When I did, one of the books I pulled all my shelf was The Well-Educated Mind by Susan Wise Bauer. I realized this is a great book for anyone wanting to read more deliberately.
Bauer is a professor at the College of William and Mary, homeschools her kids, and writes a ton of books. She's writing a whole history of the world series, the latest book of which I'll review in a few weeks. She's insanely smart. Anyway, this book focuses on how to read different types of works - novel, history/political, poetry, drama, and autobiography/memoir. She has tips on questions to ask yourself, things to look for, and journaling. She has very specific steps for each type of work. Plus, it has background info on each genre, and information on reading in general. The end of the book has an annotated bibliography, with suggestions for the best edition of the work. It's a great reference book, and I find myself pulling it out fairly often. So, if you're one of the people who made it a goal to read more deliberately this year, I highly recommend picking up a copy of it!