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Liberal Learning

Greek Philosophers

Free citizens are necessarily invited to follow the Delphic injunction, “know thyself,” that is addressed to all mankind; and their success or failure in responding to this invitation is crucial for the preservation or loss of their liberty...
Der Arme Poet ("The Poor Poet")
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Poetry is a paradox. It is the most complex and inimitable expression of thought and consciousness, but it is also the most natural and ancient. Although a form of oral and written tradition that has persisted throughout the years, poetry is dismissed as unnecessary and impractical in...
Cap and Gown
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Heather Mac Donald has written a no-holds-barred attack on the modern American university, where the absence of courage is only the tip of a very large and menacing iceberg... The Diversity Delusion: How Race and Gender Pandering Corrupt the University and Undermine Our...
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Author's Note: I wish to dedicate this essay to a writer of books whose greatness is at once utterly at home in America and quite without spatio-temporal boundaries, Marilynne Robinson, who produces in reality the images I...
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For the ancient myth-maker, there is something at the heart of all of human events that is worth preserving, something marvelous and worthy of renown, even if the account is not entirely true to life... The second-century satirist, Lucian...
0 1936

I imagine that on Parents’ Weekend there might be some parents attending this once weekly occasion when the college assembles to hear a lecture. By its very name, a lecture is read—but read out loud, delivered in the writer’s voice. Thus, the...
0 1980

'Twas the week before finals and all through the school All the students were panicked and losing their cool. The deadlines flew by because no one would heed The dates in the syllabus no one would read. The children were buried nose-deep in their...
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Vast topics are notoriously easy to avoid, and those who undertake to wrestle with them in public owe their audience some concrete reason for their choice. Let me begin with mine. First, this summer I had...
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It is the encounter with beauty, all-consuming beauty, the infinite, which directs the human soul back to God. The sky calls us up; the earth drags us down... On December 2, 1805, the French Emperor...

Pick up a Jane Austen novel, and you will discover that behind the long gowns and country dances, people in her era struggled with the same weaknesses we struggle with today. Well-written stories like Austen's bring to life the human drama that is played out in every...
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We’re filling up so much of kids’ time with extracurriculars and studying that they don’t have time to play—and without play, it’s harder to develop the self-starter instincts and resilience of an entrepreneur... This election...
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In America today, we are living in a toxic political climate that is the product of a very dangerous combination: Our rulers lack the learning necessary to ask the kinds of deep and fundamental questions that leaders and lawgivers ought to make a habit of pondering, while our people...
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If people and dogs have common ground of a higher order than animal needs, it must be in the territory of the spirit. Spirit is, just as Aristotle says, where friendship is at home. Now among us humans, this capability of the spirit is both an accomplishment and a...
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Today’s offering in our Timeless Essay series affords our readers the opportunity to join Christine Norvell as she considers the model of scholarly endeavor embodied by John of...