rush llimbaugh

The renowned intellectual leader of American conservatism has spoken out on a great topic of our time, the uselessness of studying the classics.  He said on his “show” of November 1, “Babe, you are wasting your time on a nothing major…  You’re gonna be qualified for jack excrement when you get outta here.”

Interesting, since he shills for Hillsdale College (for a good buck, I imagine), which has one of the most exciting classics programs in the country.

I know a little about the program, having been part of a little band of brothers who helped get classics back to Hillsdale in the mid-80s.  After World War II, Hillsdale, like most liberal arts colleges, was hurting financially.  In fact, in the early 50s a local businessman literally saved the college a number of times by paying the payroll out of his own pocket.  But to back up, one way the college decided to save money in 1946 was to scrap its classics department and sell off its considerable classics library.

In the early 80s it occurred to a number of us that a college that is serious about the liberal arts simply cannot be without a classics program. The Greeks, you know, invented the liberal arts.  It didn’t take much effort to convince then president George Roche, who had studied Latin in high school and at Regis College, of the merits of the idea.  After a modest start, the classics exploded at Hillsdale, and is one of the jewels in the crown of the best curriculum in the United States.

El Dolto needs to get a grip.  I wonder what, to the genius of radio land, is a “something” major?

Books mentioned in this essay may be found in The Imaginative Conservative Bookstore.

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