The more I read, the more I want to read and realize that I will never get through my list. That doesn’t stop me from reading, but sometimes I wonder if my time is spent wisely on one text versus another. This is particularly true about the literary canon where I want to read every single word. But even if I knew where to start, I would never get through it all. And I’m sure it would only make me ask more questions as I wonder about context and relationship to other texts that are not included in the literary canon.
The perfect solution to this problem would be a tutor or a guide to help me navigate that great and worthy body of thought. That is why I get pretty excited about Old Western Culture and the program that they have created. They feature the esteemed Dr. Wes Callihan, an approachable, wise teacher who has extensive insights and knowledge into the Great Books.
In these lectures, he comfortably approaches each topic from his leather armchair, ceding the screen for the occasional picture or piece of art that illustrates his point. He shares with us his knowledge of the text and how it integrates with the rest of the humanities, and he shows us how these works echo through history and thought turns to action. Later units include other presenters, but it’s hard to improve on Dr. Callihan’s friendly expositions.