Event — Fred W. Smith National Library for the Study of George Washington

Ford Evening Book Talk: Adrienne Harrison

Where: The David M. Rubenstein Leadership Hall, Fred W. Smith National Library

3600 Mount Vernon Memorial Highway, Mount Vernon, Virginia 22121

When: Tuesday, May 3, 2016, 7:00 pm

Details: Mount Vernon welcomes author Adrienne M. Harrison to the David M. Rubenstein Leadership Hall at The Fred W. Smith National Library to discuss her book A Powerful Mind: The Self Education of George Washington on May 3, 2016.

Breaking new ground in Washington scholarship and American revolutionary history, Adrienne M. Harrison investigates the first president’s dedicated process of self-directed learning through reading, a facet of his character and leadership long neglected by historians and biographers. In A Powerful Mind, Harrison shows that Washington rose to meet these trials through a committed campaign of highly focused reading, educating himself on exactly what he needed to do and how best to do it. In contrast to other famous figures of the revolution—Thomas Jefferson, John Adams, Benjamin Franklin — Washington did not relish learning for its own sake, viewing self-education instead as a tool for shaping himself into the person he wanted to be. His two highest-profile and highest-risk endeavors — commander in chief of the Continental Army and president of the fledgling United States — are a testament to the success of his strategy.

Cost: Free

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