Tuesday, June 23, 2015


Champagne and Caviar

Joseph Epstein, "Educated by Novels," A Literary Education (Edinburg: Axios, 2014), pp. 263-277 (at 264):
My reading life began in earnest at the University of Chicago, where—in the most sensible of radical curricular reforms—no textbooks were used in the College and few books by living writers were taught, and so the intellectual diet was for the most part champagne and caviar. I can recall the deep pleasure of reading Herodotus, the intellectual provocation set in motion by Thucydides. Plato and Aristotle, both of whom were offered in plentiful supply, gave an unformed mind a good workout; and although I knew I had not the least chance of attaining anything like mastery here, I did come to adore Socrates, as Plato intended.
Related post: A College Education.

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