Think about higher education

From The Hedgehog Review, Edward J. K. Gitre on A Failure to Communicate: Benjamin Braddock and the Aims of Education. In a critique of the pragmatic reduction of knowledge, Boyan Manchev defines the university as "locus of the unconditionally political". A study finds that academics generally lean one way or another early in life, bolstering theory that self-selection explains the large numbers of liberals in higher ed. Enlightened skepticism too easily turns to snark, leaving empathy and intellectual courage in short supply. A look at the most cited authors of books in the humanities. Can "neuro lit crit" save the humanities? We need to acknowledge the realities of employment in the humanities: It may be that the current dilemma is part of a long, cyclic history — or it may be something more serious is going on (and more). James Mulholland defends the "life of the mind" despite its economic risks. What should departments and deans be doing to help Ph.D.'s with a job search outside academe? Knowledge is a public good, and the growing strength of universities in China and elsewhere need not harm the West (and more). Phil Baty, who oversees a controversial international rating of universities, admits that the process had serious flaws, but argues rankings serve a legitimate purpose. End of university prestige: The growth of online learning is changing the way we think about higher education. Just how bad does a college have to be to lose accreditation? Fraud U: David Wolman on toppling a bogus-diploma empire. The Great College Hoax: Higher education can be a financial disaster — especially with the return on degrees down and student loan sharks on the prowl. Can we afford our state colleges? A "great books" college where liberty is a dirty word — not to the school's president.