The Necessity of Experience

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In this controversial book, Edward S. Reed warns that first-hand experience as a way of understanding the world and ourselves is endangered, because our culture favors indirect, second-hand knowledge that is selected, modified, packaged, and presented to us by others. Reed offers a spirited defense of unmediated experience against both modernist and postmodernist critics and outlines how to foster this vision of meaningful learning. Reed sets about the task of overturning three hundred years' tradition of inquiry and creates a book that is beautifully written, uncluttered, and precise. To read this work is a professional and personal joy. -William Kessen, Yale University Reed indicts much of modern thought for ignoring everyday experience. . . . This excellent book is highly recommended. -Library Journal Reed's slim, readable volume presents a strong argument for the primacy of direct, firsthand experience. -Choice I believe. . . the text would be especially welcomed within university education departments where substantial philosophical support is needed to sustain the movement toward adopting more innovative, practical, and relevant approaches to pedagogy. -Stephen Pattee, Bridges