The English Reader: What Every Literate Person Needs to Know

Overview

In this sequel to the best-selling The American Reader, mother-and-son team Diane and Michael Ravitch have gathered together the best and most memorable poems, essays, songs, and orations in English history, capturing in one compact volume writings that have shaped not only England, but democratic culture around the globe.
Here are words that changed the world, words that inspired revolutions as well as lovers, dreamers, and singers, words that every educated person once ...

See more details below
Hardcover
$31.53
BN.com price
(Save 9%)$35.00 List Price
Other sellers (Hardcover)
  • All (13) from $3.85   
  • New (6) from $10.17   
  • Used (7) from $3.85   
Sending request ...

Overview

In this sequel to the best-selling The American Reader, mother-and-son team Diane and Michael Ravitch have gathered together the best and most memorable poems, essays, songs, and orations in English history, capturing in one compact volume writings that have shaped not only England, but democratic culture around the globe.
Here are words that changed the world, words that inspired revolutions as well as lovers, dreamers, and singers, words that every educated person once knew—and should know today. Framed by two inspiring speeches—Queen Elizabeth before the invasion of the Spanish Armada and Winston Churchill during the dark days of World War II—the book features work by William Wordsworth and W.H. Auden, Thomas Hobbes and John Stuart Mill, Mary Wollstonecraft and Virginia Woolf, Lewis Carroll and Edward Lear, and many other extraordinary writers. Readers will find ardent love poems such as Marlowe's "The Passionate Shepherd To His Love" and Shakespeare's "Shall I Compare Thee to a Summer's Day?" We also find more philosophical works such as Yeat's "The Second Coming" and Matthew Arnold's "Dover Beach." There are excerpts from Isaac Newton and Charles Darwin, Walter Pater and John Ruskin, Edmund Burke and Thomas Carlyle, and other influential thinkers. In addition, the book includes song lyrics ranging from "Greensleeves" to "Rule, Britannia," and works that, though not considered classics, were immensely popular in their day and capture the spirit of an era, such as W.E. Henley's "Invictus" ("I am the master of my fate: / I am the captain of my soul"). The editors also provide brief, fascinating biographies of each writer.
An exquisite gift, The English Reader offers the best of the best—the soaring language and seminal ideas that fired the imagination of the English-speaking world.

Read More Show Less

Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
"This collection is impressive. With such wide-ranging selections, this volume is an excellent resource for high school humanities and science teachers looking to add depth to their lessons."—American Educator

"This unique collection offers the best that has been thought and said, not just in our unmatched literature but also in the evolution of democratic ideas. It is a book to teach, inspire, and delight all who can read the English language." —E. D. Hirsch, Jr., founder and chairman of the Core Knowledge Foundation and author of The Schools We Need and Why We Don't Have Them

"Diane and Michael Ravitch have assembled a splendid and important anthology - and one that deserves the widest possible readership." —Joseph Epstein, author of Friendship: An Exposé

"The English Reader is a remarkable resource for scholars and readers of all stripes. Whether we lean toward canon-building or canon-breaking, we English language readers have a literary history in common. This book makes the high points (and even some of the low points) of that history accessible and provides an education for us all." —Henry Louis Gates, Jr., Harvard University

"This greatest-hits package is a mix of excerpts from longer works and complete short pieces (poems, essays, speeches) that distills the essence of English literature." -Seattle Times

"The 486-page book is the kind of treasure that seldom comes along." - The Oklahoman

Library Journal
In this sequel to The American Reader, mother-and-son editors Diane Ravitch (education, NYU) and freelance critic and writer Michael Ravitch have included not only the most notable poems, essays, speeches, and songs in English history but also works that emphasize democracy and patriotism. The anthology opens with the speech by Queen Elizabeth I promising victory against the overwhelming power of the Spanish Armada and concludes with two of Winston Churchill's well-known speeches to the House of Commons. Between these historic bookmarks stands the work of such giants as William Shakespeare, William Wordsworth, and John Keats. George Orwell's "From England Your England" appears, as do poems by World War I patriots Rupert Brooke and Wilfred Owen. Also included are selections from the writings of Mary Wollstonecraft, Virginia Woolf, and Emmeline Pankhurst. Brief biographies accompany each writer's work. Covering a span of more than 300 years, this anthology shows why the language and ideas of the British Isles have had such an impact on the world. Libraries should ask themselves, though, whether they need another collection of British literature. Recommended with some reservations.
—Nancy R. Ives
Read More Show Less

Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780195077292
  • Publisher: Oxford University Press, USA
  • Publication date: 12/20/2006
  • Pages: 512
  • Product dimensions: 9.30 (w) x 6.30 (h) x 1.70 (d)

Meet the Author

Diane Ravitch is Research Professor of Education at the Steinhardt School of Education, New York University. One of America's pre-eminent historians of education, her books include Left Back, The Great School Wars, The Troubled Crusade, The Language Police, The American Reader, and The Democracy Reader. She was Assistant Secretary of Education in the first Bush administration and was appointed to a federal testing agency by President Clinton.
Michael Ravitch is a freelance critic and writer. His work has appeared in The New Republic, Yale Review, and other publications.

Read More Show Less

Customer Reviews

Be the first to write a review
( 0 )
Rating Distribution

5 Star

(0)

4 Star

(0)

3 Star

(0)

2 Star

(0)

1 Star

(0)

Your Rating:

Your Name: Create a Pen Name or

Barnes & Noble.com Review Rules

Our reader reviews allow you to share your comments on titles you liked, or didn't, with others. By submitting an online review, you are representing to Barnes & Noble.com that all information contained in your review is original and accurate in all respects, and that the submission of such content by you and the posting of such content by Barnes & Noble.com does not and will not violate the rights of any third party. Please follow the rules below to help ensure that your review can be posted.

Reviews by Our Customers Under the Age of 13

We highly value and respect everyone's opinion concerning the titles we offer. However, we cannot allow persons under the age of 13 to have accounts at BN.com or to post customer reviews. Please see our Terms of Use for more details.

What to exclude from your review:

Please do not write about reviews, commentary, or information posted on the product page. If you see any errors in the information on the product page, please send us an email.

Reviews should not contain any of the following:

  • - HTML tags, profanity, obscenities, vulgarities, or comments that defame anyone
  • - Time-sensitive information such as tour dates, signings, lectures, etc.
  • - Single-word reviews. Other people will read your review to discover why you liked or didn't like the title. Be descriptive.
  • - Comments focusing on the author or that may ruin the ending for others
  • - Phone numbers, addresses, URLs
  • - Pricing and availability information or alternative ordering information
  • - Advertisements or commercial solicitation

Reminder:

  • - By submitting a review, you grant to Barnes & Noble.com and its sublicensees the royalty-free, perpetual, irrevocable right and license to use the review in accordance with the Barnes & Noble.com Terms of Use.
  • - Barnes & Noble.com reserves the right not to post any review -- particularly those that do not follow the terms and conditions of these Rules. Barnes & Noble.com also reserves the right to remove any review at any time without notice.
  • - See Terms of Use for other conditions and disclaimers.
Search for Products You'd Like to Recommend

Recommend other products that relate to your review. Just search for them below and share!

Create a Pen Name

Your Pen Name is your unique identity on BN.com. It will appear on the reviews you write and other website activities. Your Pen Name cannot be edited, changed or deleted once submitted.

 
Your Pen Name can be any combination of alphanumeric characters (plus - and _), and must be at least two characters long.

Continue Anonymously

    If you find inappropriate content, please report it to Barnes & Noble
    Why is this product inappropriate?
    Comments (optional)