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There Are Two Educations

alex atkins bookshelf quotationsThere are obviously two educations. One should teach us how to make a living and the other how to live.

Although this quotation is often attributed to John Adams (1735-1826) — and it certainly sounds like something he would have said —  it was actually written by James Truslow Adams (1878-1949), an American historian and writer, in the essay “To Be or to Do: A Note on American Education,” appearing in the publication, Forum (June 1929). Adams (no relation to the second President of the United States) is best known for coining the term “American Dream” in The Epic of America (1931). Adams defined the American Dream as “that dream of a land in which life should be better and richer and fuller for everyone, with opportunity for each according to ability or achievement. It is a difficult dream for the European upper classes to interpret adequately, and too many of us ourselves have grown weary and mistrustful of it. It is not a dream of motor cars and high wages merely, but a dream of social order in which each man and each woman shall be able to attain to the fullest stature of which they are innately capable, and be recognized by others for what they are, regardless of the fortuitous circumstances of birth or position.” Adams was awarded a Pulitzer Prize for History for the first volume of a three-volume history of New England.

Read related post: The Paradox of the American Dream

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