How To Be Unlucky: Reflections on the Pursuit of Virtue

Joshua Gibbs

Want to order 10 or more? Email us and we'll provide a code for a 10% discount.

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.

Paperback, 246 pages

"Reading Joshua Gibbs is thought-provoking, challenging, inspiring, and withal, practical. It made me want to go back to high school and sit in his class. Finally! -- a teacher who understands that teaching great books, big ideas, critical thinking, writing techniques, and all that are simply means to the end of practicing virtue and laying up treasure in heaven. Had I read this book when I started teaching, I would have been a much better -- and more honest and brave -- teacher."

- David Hicks, author of Norms and Nobility

Joshua Gibbs teaches great books at Veritas School in Richmond, VA. His wife is generous and his children are funny.


  • Subtotal: $15.99
  • Discount: -$3.00
  • Price: $12.99