Thursday, February 9, 2012
A NEW GUIDE TO SOME OLD "GREAT BOOKS"
The Great Books Reader: Excerpts and Essays on the Most Influential Books in Western Civilization, Edited by John Mark Reynolds
Book Description: Great Books programs have become increasingly popular among Christian colleges, high schools, and even home schoolers. This one-of-a-kind book is designed for those who do not have the opportunity to attend such a program but are still interested in directly engaging with the Western Canon. It contains substantial excerpts from thirty of the most important books in history, with each excerpt followed by an essay placing the work in historical and Christian context. Readers can learn directly from such authors and thinkers as Plato, Homer, Augustine, Dante, Chaucer, Shakespeare, Milton, Tolstoy, Austen, and Chesterton. The essays are written many prominent Christian writers, lecturers, and professors including Frederica Mathewes-Green, Peter Kreeft, Hugh Hewitt, Gary Hartenburg, Robert Llizo, Melissa Schubert, Fred Sanders, and John Mark Reynolds.
The Great Books Reader will most likely become a sought-after handbook for teachers and parents alike. Reynolds believes the book is helpful as a guide for facilitating the "necessary and practical" virtue of being well-read. He says, "Reading books can be like going to the dentist: a task we know we should do, but put off for dread of the torture. This reader tries to lessen the pain and increase the initial pleasure of taking one's intellectual medicine."
John Mark Reynolds —(Ph.D., University of Rochester) Founder and Director of the Torrey Honors Institute, a Great Books program, and Professor of Philosophy at Biola University. Dr. Reynolds lectures frequently on ancient philosophy, philosophy of science, home schooling and cultural trends.