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Cultural Literacy: What Every American Needs to Know

af E.D. Hirsch Jr., E. D. Hirsch

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1,553148,344 (3.56)12
A must-read for parents and teachers, this major bestseller reveals how cultural literacy is the hidden key to effective education and presents 5000 facts that every literate American should know.  In this forceful manifesto Professor E. D. Hirsch, Jr., argues that children in the United States are being deprived of the basic knowledge that would enable them to function in contemporary society. They lack cultural literacy: a grasp of background information that writers and speakers assume their audience already has. Even if a student has a basic competence in the English language, he or she has little chance of entering the American mainstream without knowing what a silicon chip is, or when the Civil War was fought. An important work that has engendered a nationwide debate on our educational standards, Cultural Literacy is a required reading for anyone concerned with our future as a literate nation.… (mere)
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This is mostly a treatise on what was wrong with the public education system back in the '80s. Read the newer version unless you're really interested in that. This one has a big listing of everything we should know if U.S. culture to be culturally literate. The new version explains each item briefly. ( )
  helenar238 | Oct 31, 2020 |
An interesting book that illuminates all that is brought to bear upon the act of reading, comprehension, and, and interpretation.

It also brings to point the importance of a unifying language and shared cultural values and understanding.

The premises of a shared cultural literacy were even then idealistic in the 1980s and seemingly more so in the 21st century, but I think the underlying point about advantages of cultural literacy are still valid even if implementation may not be possible or desirable depending on who you ask.
  MusicforMovies | Sep 6, 2020 |
This books changed my life. ( )
  Kim_Sasso | Mar 14, 2018 |
A major bestseller that has engendered a nationwide debate on our educational
standards, Cultural Literacy is must reading for parents, teachers, and anyone
else concerned with our future as a literate nation.
  collectionmcc | Mar 6, 2018 |
This was my first look at educational theory- and while I have doubts about Hirsch's proposed system, I found this book interesting. This book's greatest appeal is its effort to "demystify" literacy, and thus, make it accessible to every American- regardless of social rank. This book tries to remove the ambiguity of what makes a citizen adequately educated. Hirsch believes the end goal of cultural literacy is merely to foster efficient communication within a nation. But, honestly- not being able to quote Shakespeare is hardly Babel tower II. I really enjoyed the sections on memory, chunking, and reading speed/comprehension. And while I found this book interesting, I hope that the overall worth of an education is more than a checklist of haphazard facts. ( )
  Alidawn | Jan 15, 2016 |
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Hirsch, E. D.hovedforfatteralle udgaverbekræftet
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Rousseau points out the facility with which children lend themselves to our false methods: . . . "The apparent ease with which children learn is their ruin." -- John Dewey
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To be culturally literate is to possess the basic information needed to thrive in the modern world.
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A must-read for parents and teachers, this major bestseller reveals how cultural literacy is the hidden key to effective education and presents 5000 facts that every literate American should know.  In this forceful manifesto Professor E. D. Hirsch, Jr., argues that children in the United States are being deprived of the basic knowledge that would enable them to function in contemporary society. They lack cultural literacy: a grasp of background information that writers and speakers assume their audience already has. Even if a student has a basic competence in the English language, he or she has little chance of entering the American mainstream without knowing what a silicon chip is, or when the Civil War was fought. An important work that has engendered a nationwide debate on our educational standards, Cultural Literacy is a required reading for anyone concerned with our future as a literate nation.

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