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Liberty and Learning: The Evolution of American Education

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Larry P. Arnn, the President of Hillsdale College, traces the history of education from the founding of the U.S. Office of Education (based on the Prussian system) in 1869 to the Higher Education Act of 1965 and its subsequent reauthorizations, to contemporary legislation. He connects these changes to fundamental shifts in our understanding of what education is, of the pur Larry P. Arnn, the President of Hillsdale College, traces the history of education from the founding of the U.S. Office of Education (based on the Prussian system) in 1869 to the Higher Education Act of 1965 and its subsequent reauthorizations, to contemporary legislation. He connects these changes to fundamental shifts in our understanding of what education is, of the purpose and ends of government, and of what it means to be human. He offers insight into the idea of liberal education as it developed in Western civilization, marked by the confluence of biblical religion and Socratic philosophy.


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Larry P. Arnn, the President of Hillsdale College, traces the history of education from the founding of the U.S. Office of Education (based on the Prussian system) in 1869 to the Higher Education Act of 1965 and its subsequent reauthorizations, to contemporary legislation. He connects these changes to fundamental shifts in our understanding of what education is, of the pur Larry P. Arnn, the President of Hillsdale College, traces the history of education from the founding of the U.S. Office of Education (based on the Prussian system) in 1869 to the Higher Education Act of 1965 and its subsequent reauthorizations, to contemporary legislation. He connects these changes to fundamental shifts in our understanding of what education is, of the purpose and ends of government, and of what it means to be human. He offers insight into the idea of liberal education as it developed in Western civilization, marked by the confluence of biblical religion and Socratic philosophy.

30 review for Liberty and Learning: The Evolution of American Education

  1. 4 out of 5

    David

    A thoughtful discussion of why the Federal government should not be involved in education. Using the example of Hillsdale College and the founders intentions and words Dr. Arnn shows how liberty and learning are necessary to one obtaining the knowledge needed to be a productive citizen in a free society.

  2. 4 out of 5

    Clay Davis

    Got a free ebook from the Dennis Prager website. Learned that the U.S. Constitution is the oldest written constitution in the world.

  3. 4 out of 5

    Jdb

    In tracing the history of Hillsdale College relative to federal government involvement, Arnn presents a disturbing picture of how the Founding Father's original intent of limited government has been transformed into a tyrannical bureaucracy. At the time it was written (2004), Hillsdale was the only college in America besides the military academies that required students to take a course on the United States Constitution and Hillsdale refuses to take direct financial help from the federal govern In tracing the history of Hillsdale College relative to federal government involvement, Arnn presents a disturbing picture of how the Founding Father's original intent of limited government has been transformed into a tyrannical bureaucracy. At the time it was written (2004), Hillsdale was the only college in America besides the military academies that required students to take a course on the United States Constitution and Hillsdale refuses to take direct financial help from the federal government, despite government legal action against it. This is a frightening warning for the future college education of America, as current trends all point away from the basic principles of our founding documents.

  4. 5 out of 5

    Burt

    At the outset of the book, Larry Arnn sets the tone for not only his, but also Hillsdale College's primary belief regarding the education of America's children. While addressing the divestiture of government-held land whether by way of the Land Ordnance of 1785 or the Homestead Act of 1862 as guided by the Northwest Ordnance, Arnn maintains that "schools and the means of education are to be encouraged as a national purpose. But they are to be encouraged through the agency and under the control o At the outset of the book, Larry Arnn sets the tone for not only his, but also Hillsdale College's primary belief regarding the education of America's children. While addressing the divestiture of government-held land whether by way of the Land Ordnance of 1785 or the Homestead Act of 1862 as guided by the Northwest Ordnance, Arnn maintains that "schools and the means of education are to be encouraged as a national purpose. But they are to be encouraged through the agency and under the control of local hands." Other reviews tend to focus on the evolution of the book into Arnn's defense of the Hillsdale College position of complete aversion to ANYTHING associated with accepting "Federal money" and reporting certain information to various federal agencies. For me, the most informative if not most important aspect of this book is its first chapter wherein Arnn sets forth the Founding Fathers' logic for local control of education and provides full reference thereto. I thoroughly enjoyed this very brief monograph as it concisely provides the information necessary to argue that the Federal Government has no business in controlling the education of America's children other than to encourage it. I find it hard to believe that anyone could take exception to Arnn's early conclusion that, "We have seen that the Founders considered education to be of a massive importance, of the highest importance. We have seen that they found ways to subsidize it on a huge scale, but ways that preserved the ability of the people who engaged in education - ultimately parents, students, and teachers - to manage it themselves. They did this for reasons having to do strictly with education itself." In my humble opinion, certainly the Department of Education as a cabinet-level entity should be abolished. But then, this has been my opinion for many, many years; it's just nice to feel that someone of the academic caliber of Larry Arnn expresses similar feelings.

  5. 4 out of 5

    Sue

    This small book traces the importance of education to the first presidency, to the setting aside of land for schools as our country expanded westward, and how Hillsdale College fits into our country's educational history. By keeping faith with its mission statement through some severe challenges, Hillsdale College continues to be an institution where truth and faith is inculcated into its teaching, preparing students to take their place as very well educated citizens in this day and age. As to b This small book traces the importance of education to the first presidency, to the setting aside of land for schools as our country expanded westward, and how Hillsdale College fits into our country's educational history. By keeping faith with its mission statement through some severe challenges, Hillsdale College continues to be an institution where truth and faith is inculcated into its teaching, preparing students to take their place as very well educated citizens in this day and age. As to be expected, President Larry Arne, the current president of Hillsdale, writes very well, and I could hear his voice speaking in my mind as I read the book.

  6. 5 out of 5

    Andrew

    Definitely a thinking book. If you want to learn about a different way of educating, one without government interference, this is the book. At times the author seems to drift into a pattern of 'patting himself on the back' for how great Hillsdale College is, but in general I found myself admiring the strength of the college's convictions and their determination to cling to them in the face of opposition from a grasping, power-hungry government. Definitely a thinking book. If you want to learn about a different way of educating, one without government interference, this is the book. At times the author seems to drift into a pattern of 'patting himself on the back' for how great Hillsdale College is, but in general I found myself admiring the strength of the college's convictions and their determination to cling to them in the face of opposition from a grasping, power-hungry government.

  7. 5 out of 5

    Maria

    One of the best books I have read on the history of education in the United States. A great resource to read especially in support non-pubic schools who choose not to receive government funds.

  8. 4 out of 5

    David Withun

    -

  9. 5 out of 5

    Jameson Cunningham

  10. 5 out of 5

    Tony Cavicchi

  11. 5 out of 5

    John

  12. 5 out of 5

    Lizzy

  13. 5 out of 5

    Madeline

  14. 4 out of 5

    Mariah Schoenborn

  15. 5 out of 5

    Pauline

  16. 4 out of 5

    Steven R. McEvoy

  17. 5 out of 5

    Kevin Thompson

  18. 4 out of 5

    Karyn Perrine

  19. 4 out of 5

    Rico McCahon

  20. 4 out of 5

    Taylor Smith

  21. 5 out of 5

    Cathy Jacobs

  22. 4 out of 5

    James Bild

  23. 4 out of 5

    Chris Thompson

  24. 5 out of 5

    Jim

  25. 5 out of 5

    Bradford Schiebel

  26. 5 out of 5

    Steve

  27. 5 out of 5

    Kristina

  28. 5 out of 5

    Joel Everett

  29. 4 out of 5

    Joel Anthony

  30. 4 out of 5

    Bradley

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