Tag Archives: Classroom Lecture

Great Mythologies of the World (book review)

Great Mythologies of the WorldGreat Mythologies of the World by Grant L. Voth
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Type: Audible
Length: 31 hours 36 minutes

An incredibly brief but informative journey around the world!

This was a great series of lectures of mythology from around the world. I wouldn’t say it is the most in depth, but it covers so many cultures that it surprised and entertained me.

As someone who has read a lot of Greek, Roman, some other European and Egyptian mythology there was nothing surprising. I have heard all these before and in more depth, so it was a disappointment. However, this is an overall view so of course they would skim the surface not dig deep.

The beauty of this was in the other Middle Eastern myths, Southeast Asian myths and African myths. I am sure they are much like the Greek and Roman mythology covered. They are probably the very basic myths and not connected well between then. However, they were brand new to me and have inspired me to check them out closer.

The one problematic area were the Native American myths. Most of them were great, I enjoyed listening to them. The problematic myth though involved what seemed to be a tale about a child watching her father be with what seems to be a two-spirit or possibly transgender lover and in the end that lover killed her father.

What bothered me greatly about this was his constant reference of that being/person/creature being a transvestite and how it was wrong. I do admit it felt personal and in full disclosure I am transgender myself, but his CV indicates no professional experience with Native American subject matter (that isn’t anything he is listed as being a specialist in) and it felt like a personal conservative viewpoint with an agenda. The rest of his myths seemed fine, but his personal observations on that one are what bothered me a lot and is why it only gets a four.

Like many of their courses, I definitely recommend this course in mythology. It is well worth the time, money and effort to get through almost 32 hours of courses. Or at least it was for me.

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Astrophysics for People in a Hurry

Astrophysics for People in a HurryAstrophysics for People in a Hurry by Neil deGrasse Tyson
My rating: 5 of 5 stars
Book Type: Audible Book
Length: 3h 41m

This is absolutely the best book I have read or listened to in years. I could just listen to Neil deGrasse Tyson read a laundry list, but he makes astrophysics and the history of the universe so smooth.

I have read up a lot for a layman on a lot of the things he covers, yet with just this short book lasting less then four hours made it so much clearer.

While I hate the whole schtick of “we are made of stardust” that is liberally spread everywhere on t-shirts and memes. However, the way he explains why that is true makes it a lot easier to accept and actually does a lot to give you that wonder of the universe.

This book is good for whatever your religious or non-religious belief. He makes no attacks on people, only explains what science has uncovered.

I cannot urge people enough to read/listen/whatever this book. I think it would be great to start with all kids in high school. It would take less then a day and it might open up some eyes, or at least some minds.

I just saw that he has a Great Lessons course called the “Inexplicable Universe: Unsolved Mysteries”, I think I need to pick that up ASAP.

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