“Everything I had worked for, all my years of study, had been to purchase for myself this one privilege: to see and experience more truths than those given to me by my father, and to use those truths to construct my own mind. I had come to believe that the ability to evaluate many ideas, many histories, many points of view, was at the heart of what it means to self-create.”

Tara Westover‘s memoir educated takes readers through her upbringing, as well as the transformative powers of knowledge and education. This book has won a number of awards, including the Number One New York Times Bestseller, Amazon Editor’s #1 Pick for the best book of 2018, and President Barack Obama’s Favorite Books of the Year List.

Nationality: American

Industry: Writing

Q: Why do you think you’re so good at teaching yourself?

A: I think it’s a belief that you can learn something. That’s something that I really value from the upbringing I got. My parents would say to me all the time: you can teach yourself anything better than someone else can teach it to you. Which I really think is true. I hate the the word “disempower,” because it seems kind of cliché, but I do think that we take people’s ability to self-teach away by creating this idea that that someone else has to do this for you, that you have to take a course, you have to do it in some formal way. Any curriculum that you design for yourself is going to be better, even if it’s not the absolute perfect one. You will follow what you care about.