Educated: A Memoir

Diversity Book Review
Reviewer: Ayesha Id-Deen, Administrative Assistant III
Title: Educated: A Memoir
Author: Tara Westover

Tara Westover’s memoir is about her life experience where she lived in a remote part of Idaho. Her parents were Mormons who didn’t embrace formal education and homeschooled their children because they did not want to corrupt them by sending them to school.

Tara spent most of her childhood working in her father’s scrapyard and helping her mother to stew herbs and lead a very isolated life. Her father was very religious and did not allow her to receive any professional medical care or even immunizations. She also grew up not knowing her exact date of birth and did not have a birth certificate.

Tara was motivated to learn so that she could secure admission into college and her first time in a formal classroom was not until she was 17 years old. She continued with school, graduating from Brigham Young University in 2008 and later won a Gates Cambridge Scholarship. In 2009, she earned a Master’s of Philosophy from Trinity College Cambridge and in 2010 she was a scholar at Harvard University. In 2014, she was awarded a PhD in history. Her life is defined by her academic success because she grew up without basic education.

As Tara went through schooling, she became aware that by her being prevented from interacting with the rest of society as a child it had caused a lot of damage and through her education she was able to obtain a proper way of life. She uses her difficult childhood experiences to help empower others to overcome challenging and abusive relationships.

This book shows that through education, self-awareness, perseverance and determination your efforts will be successful in reaching your goals.

This book review reflects the opinions of the reviewer and does not reflect the opinions of Horizon BCBSNJ.