Michael S. Roth

November 25, 2015. 

In the second edition of our series on the value and uses of liberal arts education in contemporary society, intellectual historian Michael S. Roth,  President of Wesleyan University, talks about his book Beyond the University: Why Liberal Education Matters, published in 2014 by Yale University Press.

"Conflicting streams of thought flow through American intellectual history: W. E. B. DuBois’s humanistic principles of pedagogy for newly emancipated slaves developed in opposition to Booker T. Washington’s educational utilitarianism, for example. Jane Addams’s emphasis on the cultivation of empathy and John Dewey’s calls for education as civic engagement were rejected as impractical by those who aimed to train students for particular economic tasks. Roth explores these arguments (and more), considers the state of higher education today, and concludes with a stirring plea for the kind of education that has, since the founding of the nation, cultivated individual freedom, promulgated civic virtue, and instilled hope for the future. "

41:50 minutes.


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