A Great Idea at the Time: The Rise, Fall, and Curious by Alex Beam PDF

By Alex Beam

ISBN-10: 0786726989

ISBN-13: 9780786726981

ISBN-10: 1586484877

ISBN-13: 9781586484873

Today the classics of the western canon, written through the proverbial “dead white men,” are cannon fodder within the tradition wars. yet within the Fifties and Nineteen Sixties, they have been a popular culture phenomenon. the nice Books of Western Civilization, fifty-four volumes selected through intellectuals on the college of Chicago, started as a tutorial stream, and developed right into a winning advertising inspiration. Why did one million American families purchase books by means of Hippocrates and Nicomachus from door-to-door salesmen? and the way and why did the good books fall out of favor?

In A nice proposal on the Time Alex Beam explores the nice Books mania, in an exciting and surprisingly poignant portrait of yankee pop culture at the threshold of the tv age. Populated with memorable characters, A nice notion on the Time will depart readers asking themselves: Have I learn Lucretius’s De Rerum Natura in recent times? If no longer, why not?

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Extra resources for A Great Idea at the Time: The Rise, Fall, and Curious Afterlife of the Great Books

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As evening gathered, Maude Hutchins invaded her husband’s office with her baby daughter in a perambulator, took the men home, and started pouring martinis. The subject of evidence was soon forgotten. Years later, Adler remembered a Proustian moment in his first encounter with the beautiful, “lithesome” Maude: “She exuded the pungent scent of the plasticene that she had been modeling. ” Adler explained to the couple that he was reminded of a bygone love affair with a sculptress. The odor took him back.

The subject of evidence was soon forgotten. Years later, Adler remembered a Proustian moment in his first encounter with the beautiful, “lithesome” Maude: “She exuded the pungent scent of the plasticene that she had been modeling. ” Adler explained to the couple that he was reminded of a bygone love affair with a sculptress. The odor took him back. “The immediate consequences of that Friday in New Haven were many and various,” Adler later wrote. ” Hutchins offered Adler a Yale Law School professorship.

One would like to have been Robert Hutchins. Success came easily and early to Hutchins. At least he made it look easy. By the time he met Adler, he was not only dean of a great law school, he had also married a statuesque beauty—an artist, sculptor, and novelist. Maude Hutchins was an aristocratic, enigmatic vamp who dressed only in black and white. Adler, a troll next to the godlike Hutchins, had embarked on what began as a coup de foudre love affair with a beautiful Barnard girl he spotted at a Nantucket beach party and later devolved into a loveless marriage of convenience.

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A Great Idea at the Time: The Rise, Fall, and Curious Afterlife of the Great Books by Alex Beam


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