Who Killed Homer? The Demise of Classical Education and the Recovery of Greek Wisdom

By Victor Davis Hanson; John Heath | Go to book overview

PREFACE TO THE
PAPERBACK EDITION

We are pleased to see Who Killed Homer? in a paperback edition from Encounter Books. Our intention in writing the book was that the Greeks—and how we Classicists write and teach (or do not teach) about them—might become the subject of some discussion outside the sound-proofed walls of the academy. Mostly positive reviews in the important book review publications (e.g. Kirkus, Publishers Weekly), major newspapers (e.g. Washington Post and Times, LA Times, Wall Street Journal, Cleveland Plain Dealer), and mainstream journals of various political persuasions (e.g. American Spectator, Dissent, Weekly Standard) have been a pleasant surprise.

Even more unanticipated has been the interest that a cranky book on the Greeks has aroused among the producers of national and regional public television and radio; the irony of our being asked to describe Classics and Classicists to the general public on NPR’s Talk of the Nation and PBS’s NewsHour with Jim Lehrer, as well as in numerous other radio and newspaper interviews, was not lost on us (or on the rest of our profession). We are equally pleased to have seen WKH? excerpted in magazines and newspapers both in the U.S. and in Europe, quoted in high school textbooks, and translated into Greek (Cactos Press, 1999). Apparently what we had to say about the ancient world and those who formally study it has resonated in some way with

-xi-

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Who Killed Homer? The Demise of Classical Education and the Recovery of Greek Wisdom
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • Title Page iii
  • Contents ix
  • Preface to the - Paperback Edition xi
  • Prologue xix
  • Chapter 1 - Homer Is Dead 1
  • Chapter 2 - Thinking like a Greek 21
  • Chapter 3 - Who Killed Homer — and Why? 81
  • Chapter 4 - Teaching Greek Is Not Easy 161
  • Chapter 5 - What We Could Do 209
  • Appendix - When All We Can Do Is Read 251
  • Afterword - A Reply to Our Critics 275
  • Acknowledgments 311
  • Notes 313
  • Index 317
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