Writers are inspired by other writers. These are some of the many authors who have inspired me over the years or whose work I admire in one way or another. There are many others I could list, of course, but I thought it best to keep this short. Many of the authors below are prolific, but to prevent this list from becoming too long I’ve limited myself to one book per author. If you study the masters then you too…
Allen, Barry. Vanishing into Things: Knowledge in Chinese Tradition.
Anthony, David. The Horse, the Wheel, and Language.
Arendt, Hannah. The Human Condition.
Aristotle. Nicomachean Ethics.
Aurelius. Marcus. Meditations.
Bakhurst, David. The Formation of Reason.
Barrett, William. The Illusion of Technique.
Bell, Ian. The Lives of Bob Dylan, volumes 1 and 2.
Bennett, Julian. Trajan.
Bernstein, Richard. Beyond Objectivism and Relativism.
Birley, Anthony. Marcus Aurelius: A Biography.
Brown, Peter. Power and Persuasion in Late Antiquity.
Bultmann, Rudolf. History and Eschatology.
Bury, J. B. The Idea of Progress.
Camus, Albert. The Myth of Sisyphus.
Cantor, Norman. The Civilization of the Middle Ages.
Collingwood, R. G. The Idea of History.
Dewey, John. Democracy and Education.
Dilthey, Wilhelm. Introduction to the Human Sciences.
Dostoevsky, Fyodor. The Brothers Karamazov.
Duffy, Eamon. Saints and Sinners: A History of the Popes.
Dylan, Bob. Chronicles, volume 1.
Everitt, Anthony. Augustus: The Life of Rome’s First Emperor.
Foucault, Michel. The History of Sexuality, volume one.
Frankl, Viktor. Man’s Search for Meaning.
Freud, Sigmund. The Interpretation of Dreams.
Gadamer, Hans-Georg. Truth and Method.
Geertz, Clifford. The Interpretation of Cultures.
Gibbon, Edward. The Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire.
Gogol, Nikolai. Dead Souls.
Goldsworthy, Adrian. Caesar: Life of a Colossus.
Grondin, Jean. Hans-Georg Gadamer: A Biography.
Habermas, Jürgen. Moral Consciousness and Communicative Action.
Hayek, F. A. The Road to Serfdom.
Heather, Peter. The Fall of the Roman Empire.
Hegel, G. W. F. Phenomenology of Spirit.
Heidegger, Martin. Being and Time.
Horney, Karen. Self-Analysis.
Hugo, Victor. Les Misérables.
Jaeger, Werner. Early Christianity and Greek Paideia.
James, William. Pragmatism.
Jaspers, Karl. The Origin and Goal of History.
Kearney, Richard. On Stories.
Kierkegaard, Søren. Concluding Unscientific Postscript.
Lyotard, Jean-François. The Postmodern Condition.
Madison, Gary. The Hermeneutics of Postmodenity.
Marcel, Gabriel. Man against Mass Society.
Maugham, W. Somerset. The Moon and Sixpence.
McLynn, Frank. Marcus Aurelius.
Mitscherling, Jeff. Aesthetic Genesis.
Moss, Candida. The Myth of Persecution: How Early Christians Invented a Story of Martyrdom.
Nietzsche, Friedrich. Beyond Good and Evil.
Nussbaum, Martha. The Fragility of Goodness.
Oakeshott, Michael. The Voice of Liberal Learning.
Ortega y Gassett, José. The Revolt of the Masses.
Orwell, George. 1984.
Peart, Neil. Ghost Rider.
Rand, Ayn. Atlas Shrugged.
Ricoeur, Paul. The Rule of Metaphor.
Riley-Smith, Jonathon. What Were the Crusades?
Robb, Graham. Victor Hugo: A Biography.
Rorty, Richard. Philosophy and the Mirror of Nature.
Ruse, Michael. The Philosophy of Human Evolution.
Saggs, H. W. F. Civilization Before Greece and Rome.
Sartre, Jean-Paul. Being and Nothingness.
Schrag, Calvin. Reflections on the Religious, the Ethical, and the Political.
Sizgorich, Thomas. Violence and Belief in Late Antiquity.
Smith. Julia. Europe after Rome.
Southern, R. W. The Making of the Middle Ages.
Springsteen, Bruce. Born to Run.
Starr, Chester. A History of the Ancient World.
Tolstoy, Leo. War and Peace.
Turgenev, Ivan. Fathers and Sons.
Veyne, Paul. Did the Greeks Believe in Their Myths?
Westbrook, Robert. John Dewey and American Democracy.
Wittgenstein, Ludwig. Philosophical Investigations.
If you read the books on this list—some of them, or countless others that are comparable—then, as far as I’m concerned, you’re well educated, regardless of whatever institutions of higher learning you have attended. Save your tuition dollars and read.