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Self-reliance, Inc. : A Twentieth-century Walden Experiment

Self-reliance, Inc. : A Twentieth-century Walden Experiment Self-reliance, Inc. : A Twentieth-century Walden Experiment kbeidler In the spring term of 1976, a courageous English professor at Lehigh University and fifteen trusting undergraduate students initiated a brave new course on philosophical and practical self-reliance. It was in some ways a traditional English course, with books to read and discuss, and papers to write and grade. But in other ways it was a wildly untraditional course, involving organizing the class into a for-profit corporation called Self-Reliance, Inc. Pete Beidler, the professor was corporate president of Self-Reliance, Inc. The students were all members of the board of directors. Together they borrowed money from a local bank and with it purchased for $3500 a rundown house near the university. They spent the semester practicing practical self-reliance by renovating the house from the roof on down. At the end of the semester they sold the house. Read the fascinating account, published here for the first time, of the origins and outcome of the Self-Reliance, Inc. Read about this stunningly innovative course that, years ahead of its time, broke new ground and paved the path for a new way of thinking about college education.

This is a free but partial preview edition. The full book is available for puchase at


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