Once upon a time, Joshua Gibbs was a disinterested slacker who, despite attending a classical Christian school, learned little and cared even less for his studies. He was more interested in pop culture than Great Books and performed only the bare minimum to pass. By age 27, however, he began work at a different classical institution, teaching the same literature he merely skimmed as a student. Ten years later, Gibbs has become a popular blogger and frequent speaker at education conferences. In this series of frank reflections on an unlikely career, Gibbs contemplates what it means to be a good teacher, how Great Books can change lives (and how one particular book, The Consolation of Philosophy by Boethius, changed his), and why effective education is primarily concerned with the acquisition of virtue. One part literary guidebook, one part personal memoir, and one part teacher’s manual, How to Be Unlucky presents a one-of-a-kind case for ancient ways of thinking about teaching in our contemporary world.
Joshua Gibbs teaches great books at Veritas School in Richmond, VA. His wife is generous and his children are funny.