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A Loss of Trust

The ordeal is over; my niece has chosen Tulane. A buddy in Wisconsin has a daughter, and she’s headed to Washington University. Another friend lives in Chicago, but he’s in Boston this week accompanying a daughter on campus tours. For him, the application season has just begun. I see people like . . . . Continue Reading »

Trigger Warnings and Academic Consumerism

I have been reading a lot of back-and-forth about “trigger warnings” lately. Students who see themselves as victims of discrimination and abuse are demanding that professors issue warnings about materials in courses they are teaching that might cause strong negative emotional responses in . . . . Continue Reading »

The Loving Intellect

What does it mean to be an intellectual? The word comes from the Latin word for understanding, intellego. Lego has dense, multifaceted meanings: to choose, select, collect, and gather. It also means to read. When inter gets added, which means “between,” we get a compound meaning, something like . . . . Continue Reading »

The Half-Empty Auditorium

The following essay is adapted from Chapter 3 of “The Fortunes of Poetry in an Age of Unmaking.” Those who love literature, or at any rate have a vested interest in making sure great works of literature are taught at universities and that radical politics are not, could only find the conquest . . . . Continue Reading »

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