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Importance of a Great Books Education

Many years ago – from the Middle Ages to modern times – the Bachelor of Arts (BA) degree signified completion of the secondary level of education (following the elementary, grammar or primary level) and so readiness to enter into the third level of formal education – the university, for specialization in one’s chosen field. With [...]

Great Conversation & The Great Books

By Robert M. Hutchins The tradition of the West is embodied in the Great Conversation that began in the dawn of history and that continues to the present day. Whatever the merits of other civilizations in other respects, no civilization is like that of the West in this respect. No other civilization can claim that [...]

Why Study The Great Books?

Patrick S. J. Carmack Wisdom is generally acknowledged to be the highest good of the human mind, whether this be recognized as knowledge of first principles and causes or as a contemplative gaze at Wisdom itself. How does one obtain wisdom? The means is primarily conversation with great and wise persons who [...]

The Blessings of Good Fortune by Adler

THE BLESSINGS OF GOOD FORTUNE by MORTIMER ADLER Early in life I learned a lesson from Aristotle. Whether or not we succeed in having lived a good life is not entirely a matter of free choice and moral virtue. Virtue is certainly a necessary condition; it may even be the most important factor; but by [...]

What Happened to the Great Ideas?

What Happened to the Great Ideas? by John Berlau The following article has been reprinted with the kind permission of Insight Magazine and was originally published in August, 2001. The article briefly summarizes the life, work, and genius of Mortimer J. Adler, and discusses the profound influence he has made on education. Dr. Adler converted [...]

Best Age to Begin the Study of the Great Books

Patrick S. J. Carmack by Patrick S.J. Carmack Anytime available for leisure is a good time to begin or resume the study of great books. However, for young people who have never studied them, two limitations frame the answer to the question: when is the ideal time to begin the study of [...]

Roundtable Discussions

Our "roundtable discussions" or, simply, "roundtables," are conversations upon an agreed topic and take their initial direction from particular texts that have been read for that specific roundtable.  We say "initial direction" as the conversations can go wherever the flow of ideas leads.  The number of participants is usually limited to three or four people to allow [...]

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