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    How to Read a BookFrom Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

    How to Read a Bookwas first written in 1940 by Mortimer Adler. He co-authored a heavily revised edition in 1972 with Charles Van Doren, which

    gives guidelines for critically reading good and great books of any tradition, but refrains from recommending any book outside the Western tradition;the 1972 revision, in addition to the first edition, treats genres (poetry, history, science, fiction, et cetera), inspectional and syntopical reading.


    1 Overview of the last edition1.1 Part I: The Dimensions of Reading

    1.2 Part II: The Third Level of Reading: Analytical Reading

    1.3 Part III: Approaches to Different Kinds of Reading Matter

    1.4 Part IV: The Ultimate Goals of Reading

    2 How to Read a Book Video

    3 Reading list (1972 edition)

    4 Publication data

    5 See also

    6 External links

    Overview of the last edition

    How to Read a Bookis in four parts, each of several chapters.

    Part I: The Dimensions of Reading

    Part II: The Third Level of Reading: Analytical Reading

    Here, Adler sets forth his method for reading a non-fiction book in order to gain understanding. He claims that three distinct approaches, or readings,

    must all be made in order to get the most possible out of a book, but that performing these three levels of readings does not necessarily mean reading

    the book three times, as the experienced reader will be able to do all three in the course of reading the book just once. Adler names the readings,"structural", "interpretative", and "critical", in that order.

    How to Read a Book - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

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  • 8/8/2019 How to Read a Book - Wikipedia


    How to keep awake while reading.2.

    Coming to terms with the author.3.

    What's the proposition and why?4.

    The questions to ask a book.5.

    Talking back to the author.6.

    Sorting out the books.7.

    How to read stories.8.

    What makes a story good.9.

    How to read a poem.10.

    Activating poetry and plays.11.

    How to read two books at a time.12.

    The pyramid of books.13.

    Reading list (1972 edition)

    (They are useless to the proposed end without the reading method provided by the book.)

    Homer:Iliad, Odyssey1.The Old Testament2.

    Aeschylus: Tragedies3.

    Sophocles: Tragedies4.

    Herodotus:Histories5.Euripides: Tragedies6.

    Thucydides:History of the Peloponnesian War7.Hippocrates: Medical Writings8.

    Aristophanes: Comedies9.

    Plato: Dialogues10.

    Aristotle: Works11.Epicurus:Letter to Herodotus;Letter to Menoecus12.Euclid:Elements13.Archimedes: Works14.

    Apollonius of Perga: Conic Sections15.Cicero: Works16.

    Lucretius: On the Nature of Things17.Virgil: Works18.

    Horace: Works19.Livy:History of Rome20.Ovid: Works21.

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    Plutarch:Parallel Lives; Moralia22.Tacitus:Histories;Annals;Agricola Germania23.

    Nicomachus of Gerasa:Introduction to Arithmetic24.Epictetus:Discourses;Encheiridion25.Ptolemy:Almagest26.Lucian: Works27.

    Marcus Aurelius: Meditations28.Galen: On the Natural Faculties29.The New Testament30.

    Plotinus: The Enneads31.St. Augustine: On the Teacher; Confessions; City of God; On Christian Doctrine32.The Song of Roland33.

    The Nibelungenlied34. The Saga of Burnt Njl35.

    St. Thomas Aquinas: Summa Theologica36.Dante Alighieri: The Divine Comedy;The New Life; On Monarchy37.Geoffrey Chaucer: Troilus and Criseyde; The Canterbury Tales38.Leonardo da Vinci: Notebooks39.

    Niccol Machiavelli: The Prince;Discourses on the First Ten Books of Livy40.Desiderius Erasmus: The Praise of Folly41.

    Nicolaus Copernicus: On the Revolutions of the Heavenly Spheres42.Thomas More: Utopia43.Martin Luther: Table Talk; Three Treatises44.

    Franois Rabelais: Gargantua and Pantagruel45.John Calvin:Institutes of the Christian Religion46.Michel de Montaigne:Essays47.William Gilbert: On the Loadstone and Magnetic Bodies48.Miguel de Cervantes:Don Quixote49.Edmund Spenser:Prothalamion; The Faerie Queene50.Francis Bacon:Essays;Advancement of Learning;Novum Organum, The New Atlantis51.William Shakespeare:Poetry and Plays52.Galileo Galilei: Starry Messenger;Dialogues Concerning Two New Sciences53.Johannes Kepler:Epitome of Copernican Astronomy; Concerning the Harmonies of the World54.William Harvey: On the Motion of the Heart and Blood in Animals; On the Circulation of the Blood; On the Generation of Animals55.Thomas Hobbes:Leviathan56.Ren Descartes:Rules for the Direction of the Mind;Discourse on the Method; Geometry; Meditations on First Philosophy57.John Milton: Works58.

    Molire: Comedies59.

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    How to Read a Book - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia to Read a Book

  • 8/8/2019 How to Read a Book - Wikipedia


    James Joyce: 'The Dead' inDubliners; A Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man; Ulysses132.Jacques Maritain:Art and Scholasticism; The Degrees of Knowledge; The Rights of Man and Natural Law; True Humanism133.Franz Kafka: The Trial; The Castle134.Arnold J. Toynbee:A Study of History; Civilization on Trial135.Jean Paul Sartre:Nausea;No Exit;Being and Nothingness136.Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn: The First Circle; The Cancer Ward137.

    Publication data

    Mortimer Adler,How to Read a Book: The Art of Getting a Liberal Education, (1940)1966 edition published with subtitleA Guide to Reading the Great Books1972 revised edition, coauthor Charles Van Doren, subtitle The Classic Guide to Intelligent Reading, Touchstone Books, ISBN0-671-21209-5

    See also

    Reading (activity)

    External linksA collection of essays by Adler ( , including several on reading.

    Retrieved from ""

    Categories: Alternative education

    This page was last modified on 9 November 2010 at 18:33.

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    How to Read a Book Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

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