- Hardcover: 672 pages
- Publisher: Houghton Mifflin (Trade); 3rd edition (3 Oct. 2002)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0618226478
- ISBN-13: 978-0618226474
- Product Dimensions: 19.5 x 4.6 x 23.5 cm
- Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 829,720 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
Cultural Literacy Hardcover – 3 Oct 2002
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)
I use this dictionary with several ways. First, just read the page I am intersted in. Second, I consult it during my writing to find better expression, and do more research to understand the background better via internet. Third, play game with this book with my American Classmates - in fact, this helps me the most. They explain what is not written in the dictionary, and this is the way I can acquire the knowledge of the expression easily and last long in my brain.
This dictionary is wonderful, I think, for both for navtive and non-native. Non natives can upgrade their English level with cultural understanding, and natives can be more sophisticated using their languages. It is a great tool, and I am happy to find it!
Although I am not one to pick up a dictionary and read through it, I typically cover several pages at a time when I reference this book. While reading the text of one piece, I often find myself intrigued about, and looking up, another topic.
Every home should have a copy of this book!
Yes, I'll admit the title does have a certain haughtiness and presumptiouness to it, but this book is packed with information. The topics covered are quite broad, and I guess it would HAVE to be if the goal is to ensure cultural literacy. Including all the things you should have learned in highschool had you been paying attention, this book is a great refresher course in everything from History, to Literature, to proverbs and idioms in the English language.
It has a bit of a western bias, which is sort of what I'm getting at when I say the title presumes alot. Perhaps an alternate title (and I mean this without cynicsm) would be "what most Americans don't know about America but should." I include myself in that category, by the way.
The best thing about this book is it's organization. At first, I was wishing it was all alphabetical, but then you realize that grouping entries in catagorized chapters is better. Additionally, the bites of data are concise and easily digested, enough to answer a question and provide enough information for you to look elsewhere if you want in depth explainations.