Devon, PA. As I announced some months back, Front Porch Republic will return to the University of Notre Dame this week to participate in the Center for Ethics and Culture’s annual fall conference. We will hold a panel discussion on Saturday afternoon, and I invite all interested readers to come out to South Bend and join us for the occasion. I will do my best to ensure there is time and place for drinks and good conversation in the evening (coupled, perhaps, with the second half the the ND V. Maryland game), after the Conference’s conclusion.
The details on the panel are as follows:
Saturday, November 12th. 3:15-4:40
McKenna Hall Auditorium
Session 2: Education in the Mass Age: Why Scale Matters.
–Jeffrey Polet, Hope College
[The progressive movement attempted to reconstitute American education along the lines of a secular religion. Central to this project was a transformation of the schools into homogenized institutions of mass instruction in the new religion.]
–Patrick Deneen, Georgetown University
–Peter Koritansky, The University of Prince Edward Island
[The value of a college education has become too closely tied to its economic benefits. The goal of education toward fostering moral and virtuous members of their communities has been completely displaced by narrow utilitarian ends among students and moral relativism among the teachers.]
–Jason Peters, Augustana College
[The distinction between liberal and mechanical arts descends to us from Aristotle and is preserved in two books bearing the title in The Idea of the University. The distinction, though useful and necessary, is problematic when it becomes a division. Addressing the division is a vital task in the mass age.]
–James Matthew Wilson, Villanova University
[Schools should arrange their curricula to lead to the formation of varied ideas of a good human character more particular than a vague commitment to “critical thinking.” This will involve schools forming diverse characters rather than merely preaching diversity.]
Chair: Philip Bess, University of Notre Dame