Racing Odysseus: A College President Becomes a Freshman Again

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University of California Press, 2010 - Biography & Autobiography - 262 pages
2 Reviews
The idea of reliving youth is a common fantasy, but who among us is actually courageous enough to try it? After surviving a deadly cancer against tremendous odds, college president Roger H. Martin did just that--he enrolled at St. John's College, the Great Books school in Annapolis, Maryland, as a sixty-one-year-old freshman. This engaging, often humorous memoir of his semester at St. John's tells of his journey of discovery as he falls in love again with Plato, Socrates, and Homer, improbably joins the college crew team, and negotiates friendships across generational divides. Along the way, Martin ponders one of the most pressing questions facing education today: do the liberal arts still have a role to play in a society that seems to value professional, vocational, and career training above all else? Elegantly weaving together the themes of the great works he reads with events that transpire on the water, in the coffee shop, and in the classroom, Martin finds that a liberal arts education may be more vital today than ever before. This is the moving story of a man who faces his fears, fully embraces his second chance, and in turn rediscovers the gifts of life and learning.

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User Review  - Maya47Bob46 - LibraryThing

As a graduate of St. John's College, I was disappointed by this book. Mr. Martin did not really become a college freshman again as he only joined the rowing club and took freshman seminar. He did not ... Read full review

LibraryThing Review

User Review  - Sandydog1 - LibraryThing

A college president, who decides to become a freshmen and read The Greatest Books curriculum? I couldn't pass this one up. I LOVE books about books, I reminisce about college a lot, I am incredibly ... Read full review

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About the author (2010)

Roger H. Martin is Professor of History Emeritus and past president at Randolph-Macon College in Ashland, Virginia.

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