E. D. Hirsch
Joseph F. Kett
James S. Trefil
Houghton Mifflin, Boston, MA, 1993, English
Nonfiction, Art and Cultural History; Nonfiction, Reference
ISBN: 9780395437483

From the Publisher (3rd edition): In this fast-paced information age, how can Americans know what's really important and what's just a passing fashion? Now more than ever, we need a source that concisely sums up the knowledge that matters to Americans—the people, places, ideas, and events that shape our cultural conversation. With more than nearly 7,000 entries, The New Dictionary of Cultural Literacy is that invaluable source. Wireless technology. Gene therapy. NAFTA. In addition to the thousands of terms described in the original Dictionary of Cultural Literacy, here are more than 500 new entries to bring Americans' bank of essential knowledge up to date. The original entries have been fully revised to reflect recent changes in world history and politics, American literature, and, especially, science and technology. Cultural icons that have stood the test of time (Odysseus, Leaves of Grass, Cleopatra, the Taj Mahal, D-day) appear alongside entries on such varied concerns as cryptography, the digital divide, the European Union, Kwanzaa, pheromones, SPAM, type A and type B personalities, Web browsers, and much, much more. As our world becomes more global and interconnected, it grows smaller through the terms and touchstones that unite us. As E. D. Hirsch writes in the preface, “Community is built up of shared knowledge and values—the same shared knowledge that is taken for granted when we read a book or newspaper, and that is also taken for granted as part of the fabric that connects us to one another.”

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Ken Carbone

A national best seller, this book has been widely acclaimed for identifying and defining the core knowledge without which no literate American should be. I have found this to be an invaluable resource covering everything from mythology, fine arts, and American history to anthropology, earth sciences, and technology. This book will make you smarter.

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