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This was later minimized with the expansion of the movement.The relevant course at Columbia University in New York first taught by John Erskine, a musician, author and literature prof, who specialized in Elizabethan literature, was originally titled General Honors and the books he assembled were called the “Classics of Western Civilization.” Erskine’s first list was simply his own list of 52 books.He had his students read one classic a week and then meet once a week for a two-hour discussion sitting round a large oval table.When it began in 1921, there was only one discussion group, which Erskine conducted by himself (he was a soloist on piano as well, at the NY Philharmonic).But one explanation of any long fame is that it is deserved, and the men who wrote these books would have been horrified if they had known that you and I might think of them only as matter for school and college courses. It is advisable to sample as many of the great books as we can, for the first ones we come to may not be those which reflect us most completely.
Other lists compiled by individuals or various publishing houses (e.g.
Had it gone no farther, the movement would never have taken off – at least from there.
But Erskine combined his list of classics with a discussion group approach – now commonly called a Socratic discussion group (or Socratic seminar or tutorial).
greatbooksrare The first answer is that there are many answers – men have disagreed in compiling lists of the greatest books.
In the 19th century Oxford and Cambridge Universities each put together classics courses and so short lists of classics, but no comprehensive list as such.