Catching up on a Lifetime's Reading.

Author:Thomas, Pamela B.
Position:Letter to the editor

Jon, your editorials often strike my interest, as with last month's editorial on a grand reading list for college graduates. I was interested because about 10 years ago, I adopted Clifton Fadiman's and John S. Major's book The New Lifetime Reading Plan as my master reading plan. I zealously began collecting the books and working out a reading plan, much of which I had to defer for a couple of years until I retired in my 50s. I'd always loved reading--especially the classics--but long (and mostly joyful) hours working as a career computing professional depleted my energy for literary pursuits [See my latest editorial on the opposite page! --Jon].

This August I will have completed the Fadiman plan. What a quest! Reading Joyce's Ulysses early on nearly defeated me. But mostly I want to tell you the magic that happened since I embarked on this journey. I soon realized that I knew nothing of history, nothing of geography, nothing of philosophy and religion--and that many of these works were not fully accessible without more background. So I began my education in these other areas, starting with geography. Then something really interesting happened: I began to be interested in these other countries and in their histories. I started reading high school and college history texts and progressed to more mature works. Today my interest in history is as deep as my interest...

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