Product Description A systematic approach to lifelong learning interconnects disciplines and ideas, explains the shortcomings of specialization, shows how to assimilate information and knowledge into understanding and wisdom, and offers a defense of the liberal arts. From Publishers Weekly Adler passionately believes that most people, even those with college degrees, have not really acquired the skills necessary to explore the world of ideas. To document his argument that people are not systematically educated and that overspecialization is rampant, the author (Ten Philosophical Mistakes takes us on an A-to-Z romp through encyclopedias, card catalogues and university curricula. Such thinkers as Aristotle, Bacon, Coleridge and Spencer have wrestled with the problem of how to organize all human knowledge. The core of this challenging, if peculiar, "guidebook" surveys some 20 thinkers in two- to four-page sections. Adler attempts to provide tools to make the leap from information to organized knowledge and wisdom. His proposal to map current disciplines includes an "outline of knowledge" that helped revolutionize the Encyclopaedia Britannica, and an "index of great ideas" embodied in the Great Books of the Western World series. Philosophy is restored as queen of the sciences in Adler's scheme, and poetry turns out to be philosophy's handmaiden. Copyright 1986 Reed Business Information, Inc. From Library Journal Adler's goal is to present a guide to learning for anyone who wishes to be truly educated in this century of the knowledge explosion. He criticizes the alphabetical arrangement of subjects in encyclopedias, library catalogs, and courses in university catalogs, which results in a bewildering chaos of segments of knowledge. Several chapters are devoted to a cursory survey of classification systems from ancient to present times. He suggests remedies for "alphabetiasis," describes the classification of knowledge in Encyclopedia Britannica's Propaedia, and recommends the Syntopicon of the Great Books of the Western World as a guide for learning. In spite of a few inaccuracies, this provocative book is required reading for educators and both students and practitioners in library and information science. Shirley Hopkinson, Library & Information Science Div., California State Univ., San Jose Copyright 1986 Reed Business Information, Inc.