From Archetype to Zeitgeist: An Essential Guide to Powerful Ideas by Herbert R. Kohl, Hardcover | Barnes & Noble
From Archetype to Zeitgeist: An Essential Guide to Powerful Ideas

From Archetype to Zeitgeist: An Essential Guide to Powerful Ideas

by Herbert R. Kohl

Editorial Reviews

Addiction isn't in here, but could be the consequence of opening this fascinating "toolbox" of today's most important intellectual terms--an understanding of which is essential to critical thinking. Organized by topic, each word is explained in a comprehensive but concise definition, with a pronunciation guide and derivation added for ease of reference. Annotation c. Book News, Inc., Portland, OR (
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The noted educator who wrote this book describes it as a guide to the language of ideas. As a teacher he has observed that high school students and college freshmen often lack the vocabulary and training to think critically and to communicate complex ideas and concepts. He solicited suggestions for "powerful" words and ideas to include here from teaching faculty, students, and colleagues. He reports his methodology in "How This Guide Was Made" at the end of the volume The work is divided into 11 categories such as "The Arts," "Literature," "Religion," "Economics," and "Political Science." Unlike a standard dictionary, the 247 entries are arranged alphabetically within these categories. Since the entries are drawn from actual experience in coursework, the emphasis is on concepts ("Ockham's razor"), foreign terms ("qua"), common prefixes ("meta-"), and other words and phrases that students must master in order to talk about ideas. Each entry is highlighted in boldface in the wide margin, with variant pronunciations, part of speech, and a simple derivation below it. The majority of words are Greek or Latin in origin, with such exceptions as the Arabic "algorithm". Definitions are as short as two sentences ("parasitism") or as long as 21/2 pages ("psychoanalysis") As a result of the categorical arrangement of the work, the "Complete Word List" serves as an index, with many cross-references. Also, within the text, words and phrases that appear elsewhere as main entries are italicized. There are a few simple line drawings scattered throughout the text. The "Pronunciation Guide" at the beginning of the work is helpful, but it would be more valuable if the occurrence of sounds in words were italicized. The bibliography consists of works the author has consulted, including dictionaries, subject-area resources, and standard handbooks of English usage Libraries owning the five-volume "Dictionary of the History of Ideas" (Scribner, 1973-74) and E. D. Hirsch's "Dictionary of Cultural Literacy" ["RBB" Ap 1 89] will use "Archetype" as an enrichment tool. Entries in "Archetype" are more clearly defined for high school students and college freshmen than those in the "Dictionary of the History of Ideas" and longer than those in "The Dictionary of Cultural Literacy"; however, both of these titles contain many more entries Kohl states that he hopes to add more volumes in the future to cover the many ideas he omitted in this eclectic guide. Meanwhile the present volume serves as a handy tool to augment other sources and to generate thought and class discussion on important ideas. High school, undergraduate, and public libraries will all want to consider purchase.

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Little, Brown and Company
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1st ed

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