CLE/PHIL/ENGL-601 – The Education of a Free Man: Introduction to the Liberal Arts

Instructor: D. T. Sheffler
Dates: May 30 – August 15, 2024 (ten sessions; no class July 4 or July 11)
Time: Thursdays, 2:00 – 5:00 PM ET
Credits: Core | 3 credits 

What does it mean for a man to be free? How does a man use his freedom well? These questions address the heart of the classical distinction between the liberal arts (Latin liber = free) and the servile or mechanical arts. A “liberal” education refers to the steps that lead away (e-ducere = to lead out) from the default, easy, servile starting point of our unrefined nature (erudition = being shaped and refined, i.e., not being rudus or “unformed”) to the full life befitting a free man. In this course, we will explore the tradition of liberal learning from Plato to Karl Marx, examining these questions from all sides. We will ask what it means to be truly educated, what education is for, and what kind of freedom is desirable for man. Hopefully, this will lay a foundation for your other courses at Memoria College as you establish a basic understanding of what all these classes are about.

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