This is a collection of seventeen essays on learning, teaching, and the philosophy of education. A sequel to Hawkins's "The Informed Vision" (1947), this new volume covers a wide range of topics, from generating the most basic student interest in the subject matter at hand to the specific challenges of teaching science and mathematics. In the title essay, Hawkins addresses widespread concerns over low literacy rates and the poor state of our educational system, questioning our limited understanding of literacy as the ability to manipulate the printed word. Another essay explicates methods of inducing children toward certain types of learning, and then letting their spontaneous, natural urges toward self-education take over. In his concluding essay on human equality, Hawkins argues - contrary to recent works such as Richard J. Herrnstein and Charles Murray's "The Bell Curve" - that it is the relative poverty or wealth of our intellectual nurturing with respect to the cultural mainstream that accounts for differences in educational performance, no congenital inequalities.
Moreover, he seeks to address exactly what sort of equivalence or equality - preferably one that does not erase individual and cultural differences-we can and ought unqualifiedly to approve of and so seek to realise. Whatever the topic, Hawkins's essays draw upon a lifetime of teaching experience, illuminating the multiplicity of methods that should be used to educate our children.