Book Reviews

Two Views: Allan Bloom and Pop Culture

Posted by Mark Judge and Emily Esfahani Smith Cross-posted from the Daily Caller and Acculturated.com. Mark Judge: How Bloom Killed Conservatism Almost 25 years ago, a catastrophe befell American conservatism. University of Chicago professor Allan Bloom wrote about rock and roll. His words came in the book “The Closing of the America Mind,” which was […]

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One Vote Here Against For-Profits

In his recent book, Change.edu: Rebooting for the New Talent Economy, Andrew Rosen writes: “It’s rare for anyone to lay out a clear case as to exactly what the problem is with private-sector education.” Ok, here it is. The problem is not, as Rosen says, that the pairing of the words for-profit and education makes […]

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A Funny Book about Worthless Degrees

“Here are some [college] degrees that cost you roughly $30,000 in tuition, their much cheaper replacements, and the savings you’d realize:                   Degree                                  Replacement                                        Savings                   Foreign Languages                 Language Software                               $29,721                   Philosophy                             Read Socrates                                    $29,980                   Women’s Studies                   Watch Daytime TV                               $30,000                   Journalism                             Start […]

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Best Books of 2011

What were the best books of the year on higher education? A panel of ten prominent people in the field, invited to vote by Minding the Campus, picked as their top two choices, “Academically Adrift: Limited Learning on College Campuses” by Richard Arum and Josipa Roksa; and “Crazy U: One Dad’s Crash Course in Getting […]

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The Fiske Guide Turns 30

It seems only yesterday that a few colleagues and I gathered every night in the back of the newsroom of New York Times, then on West 43rd Street, to create the first edition of the Fiske Guide to Colleges. It’s hard to believe that the appearance of the 2012 edition this month marks the 30th […]

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Students ‘Adrift’? Don’t Blame Them

I haven’t read Richard Arum and Josipa Roksa’s Academically Adrift: Limited Learning on College Campuses, and frankly, I’m not sure that I want to. Having had high expectations of other widely touted books on higher education—most recently, Hacker and Dreifus’s Higher Education?, Martha Nussbaum’s Not For Profit, Mark Taylor’s Crisis on Campus—and having been sadly […]

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The Book That Shook the Campuses

Neither liberals nor conservatives take the education part of higher education very seriously. Instead, college gets used as an arena for special interest promotion and ideological dispute. The right publishes lists of “The 101 Most Dangerous Academics in America” while fulminating about post-modernism and the hedonist student culture. The left pours endless billions of taxpayer […]

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Don’t Pay Sticker Price, Part 2—the National Universities

————————————- Read Part 1 here. ————————————- In examining the gulf between sticker price and real cost, let’s consider the top 10 national universities as defined by U.S. News & World Report in its most recent rankings. Using U. S. Department of Education data, I compiled the average net prices that students from different family income […]

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Don’t Pay Sticker Price for College

By Peter Sacks Jeffrey Selingo, the editor of The Chronicle of Higher Education, should have known better. He told ABC News: “students that maybe 10 or 15 years ago came from families who can easily afford to pay for their son’s or daughter’s education are now being forced to apply for financial aid.” That sounds […]

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Seeing Academic Repression Everywhere

In the epilogue of a new compendium volume, Mark Bousquet notes that, “In July 2007, the American Sociological Association reported that one-third of its members felt their academic freedoms were threatened, a significantly higher figure than the one-fifth ratio recorded during the McCarthy years.” Sounds dire, doesn’t it? Well not if you’ve spent the prior […]

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What Is The AAUP Up To?

Cary Nelson, current president of the American Association of University Professors, has a new book dealing with academic freedom and its relationship to broader structural problems in higher education. No University Is an Island: Saving Academic Freedom is interesting and important, but also frustrating. It provides remedies to the problems confronting academic freedom at the […]

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Why Don’t More Graduate

Less than 60 percent of students at our four-year colleges complete their studies and graduate. That depressing statistic has drawn many critics, and now it has occasioned a book, Crossing the Finish Line, by three well-connected members of the academic establishment–William Bowen, Matthew Chingos, and Michael McPherson (hereafter, BCM). The authors obtained some data on […]

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The Ominous Rise Of The Adjuncts

By Maurice Black & Erin O’Connor Review of John C. Cross and Edie Goldenberg’s Off-Track Profs: Nontenured Teachers in Higher Education. (Cambridge: MIT Press): 2009. According to the AAUP, 48 percent of faculty are part-timers, and 68 percent of all faculty appointments take place off the tenure track. The American Federation of Teachers (AFT) cites […]

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School Daze: The Best Novels About The Campus

“I expect you’ll be becoming a schoolmaster, sir. That’s what most of the gentlemen does, sir, that gets sent down for indecent behavior.” – Evelyn Waugh, Decline and Fall, 1928 Those were the days. A novelist could teach for a year or two and emerge with enough satire to fill a library. Alas, the Academy […]

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Do Rich White Kids Win With Affirmative Action?

Color and Money: How Rich White Kids are Winning the War Over College Affirmative Action  by Peter Schmidt Reviewed by George C. Leef Exactly how important is a college degree from a prestige school? Many believe that having such a degree is extremely important – a virtual guarantee of success in life. The higher education […]

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Bloom Bludgeoned

Donald Lazere offers a breezy and factless hatchet job on Allan Bloom today at Inside Higher Ed. At first he seems about to offer a detailed critique of his works, asserting that they are “lofty-sounding ideological rationalizations for the policies of the Republican Party from Ronald Reagan to George W. Bush.” Stern words; Lazere follows […]

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Things You Might Not Know About The Duke Case

Things you might not know about the Duke non-rape case if you haven’t read the new book “Until Proven Innocent” by Stuart Taylor, Jr, and KC Johnson: * Collin Finnerty did not beat up a gay man in a homophobic rage outside a Georgetown bar in 2005, as much of the news media reported. Finnerty […]

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