The Art of Freedom: Teaching the Humanities to the Poor by Earl Shorris

the art of freedom

2 out of 5 stars.

I did not finish this, just to be completely honest. I loved the premise and was really interested in how much difference a free course in the classical humanities could make. I read about half of the book and I still have no idea. Earl Shorris may have had a brilliant idea about reducing poverty through free college-level courses but the man has absolutely no sense of narrative.

The chapters consist of brief biographies of everyone included in that leg of the project and a timeline of that stage. There are no charming anecdotes or anything resembling stories. It is very boring personal details about the people and dates. It is a simple timeline peppered with unnecessary facts that has been stretched out into a book. Everyone but Shorris is not sketched out in enough detail to seem real and there is not enough narrative flow to bind everything together. It is sooo dry. The thesis of the book is ill defined and not supported. As much as I was really pumped for this book, I could not drag myself through it.


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