Liberal Learning

By long custom at St. John’s College, the president invites to Thanksgiving dinner all our international students, as well as any other students and faculty who are spending Thanksgiving away from home and family. After the events...

Everything is Political Just as I began my college teaching career thirty years ago, the whole academy seemed to have accepted as axiomatic the assertion that “Everything is Political.” This self-evident universal truth...

Some rather distressing, though hardly surprising, developments in our public schools were reported recently by our libertarian friends at reason.com. It seems the Minneapolis Public Schools (MPS) have decided it is time to reduce “the...
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In this essay, I propose that the paradigm presented by Matthew Arnold on the meaning of culture can and should be a response for understanding the eroding arts and humanities today. The Unmapped...
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I want to steal four minutes of my talking time to speak of the role that the Santa Fe campus has played in my life. I remember vividly the atmosphere around its founding in the years before 1964,...

“If there’s one thing I learned from seminar, it’s that saying what something is NOT, is not the same as saying positively what it IS.” Part I: Before If you choose to go...

Traherne Windows-Audley Chapel My little sister followed me to England, fell in love with the country, fell in love with an Englishman, and fell in love with the English poets. She studied English literature in...
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The intellectual power, originality and prescience of Irving Babbitt becomes with each passing decade more obvious. Scholars familiar with Babbitt's work are used to noting the belated discovery by others of questions that he identified and treated...

Welcome to the Class of 2018. Welcome to their families and friends. Welcome Back to the rest of the College community! There is nothing in the world like the energy in this room as we open...

Webster's defines “intelligent” as “endowed with intelligence or intellect; possessed of, or exhibiting, a high or fitting degree of intelligence or understanding.” This modern understanding of “intelligence” as an innate disposition or propensity differs from earlier understandings...
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I have been absent from the pages of The Imaginative Conservative these last several weeks, a place that I consider to be my literary home. The diversity of topics that The Imaginative Conservative publishes helped to foster a...
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I. Principles and Parts of the Program Every plan of education, whether borne up by a passing trend or bound into a long tradition, is fraught with implicit philosophical principle. Since the program...

The teaching and inculcating of virtue—rooted in and derived from the Judeo-Christian understanding of the Natural Law—should be the purpose of a liberal arts education. Virtue remains a difficult concept for the modern mind to grasp, as the...

At an earlier session I spoke about Socrates as a model for imitating heroes, because he shows us how to use the lives of extraordinary people to help us make and remake a life...