What To Do About Education: The Universities
“There is a great deal of ruin in a nation,” Adam Smith informed his readers. And so there is in a university. It is a comforting thought that we might keep in mind as we contemplate the transformation of higher education in recent years and consider what should be done, or undone, about it.1
A quarter of a century ago, Robert Nisbet wrote a book that is still the seminal work on the subject, The Degradation of the Academic Dogma. To readers fresh from the dramatic events of the 60′s—the student “rebellion” at Berkeley in 1964 and the later uprisings in one university after another—Nisbet provided a larger perspective, locating the beginning of the revolution well before that memorable decade and making professors, administrators, and the government complicitous in that revolution.
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