Classical Education’s Myth (Norms & Nobility Notes, ch. 2 II)

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Norms and Nobility is a classical education essential, but it’s also a difficult read. Take it in the bite-sized portions provided (the numbered sections), and think about it over the course of a year or two. Better yet, do so with me in this slow-drip series. Previous: Classical Education’s Map (chapter 2, section I) Next: Classical Education’s Master (chapter 2, section III) – planned for November 7 In this section, Hicks contrasts two uses of – and two feelings about … Read More

Classical Education’s Map (Norms & Nobility Notes, ch. 2 I)

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Part of an ongoing, slow series through David Hick’s Norms and Nobility. Previous: Classical Education: Dialogue Next: Chapter 2, section 2 planned for August 21 In the first section of chapter two, Hicks introduces us to another productive paradox of values in classical education: mythos and logos. However, most of this section reminds us why mythos – the part we as moderns are most likely to ignore and dismiss – is essential to having a culture at all. The logos … Read More

Classical Education’s Dialogue (Norms & Nobility Notes, ch. 1 IV)

The slow series through Norms and Nobility, section by section. Previous: Classical Education’s Demands, chapter 1, section 3 Next: chapter 2, section 1 planned for July 23 Section 4 of chapter 1 explains that within the classical tradition, there have always been two different types of teachers, two different approaches. Hicks calls them the rhetorician and the philosopher. Both schools agreed that virtue must be taught, that teaching virtue was the aim of education. It was in how to do … Read More

Classical Education’s Demands (Norms & Nobility Notes, ch. 1, III)

Although my book club just finished reading and discussing chapter 4 of Norms & Nobility, here on the blog I’m taking a slower, more ruminant approach so that I can sit with these ideas longer and so that you can follow along with me without pressure. Previous: Classical Education’s Delight, chapter 1, section 2 Next: chapter 1, section 4 planned for June 26th Our aim in education should be virtue – not only knowing what is good and true and … Read More

Classical Education’s Delight (Norms & Nobility Notes, ch. 1, II)

Previous: Classical Education’s Distinctives, chapter 1, section I chapter 1, section III planned for June 5 Did you know that, historically, not only were the ideals of education and virtue intimately linked, but so was the ideal of happiness? When our founders wrote that we have a right to the pursuit of happiness, they were drawing on the classical tradition, which firmly believed that happiness was tied to virtue, not to consumer goods. Stating that the first true source for … Read More

Classical Education’s Distinctives (Norms & Nobility Notes, ch. 1, I)

Previous: prologue Next: Chapter 1, section II For years – decades, even – the classical renewal movement has been refining its definition of what classical education really means. Definitions are a vital place to begin, of course, which is why the conversation over definitions can be so frustrating. Shouldn’t this be an easy, simple question? Why is there so much dialog and development and even disagreement? David Hick’s very first chapter addresses both the definition and the dialog surrounding classical … Read More

What to Read – advice on the liberal arts from Hugh St. Victor

Hugh of St. Victor was a Saxon churchman who read and wrote much. Wikipedia says of him: Hugh wrote many works from the 1120s until his death, including works of theology, commentaries, mysticism, philosophy and the arts, and a number of letters and sermons. Hugh was influenced by many people, but chiefly by Saint Augustine, especially in holding that the arts and philosophy can serve theology. _ In his primary work on philosophy and education (after all, philosophy – wisdom-love … Read More

Classical Education is Idealistic (Norms & Nobility Notes, prologue)

Slow read with me through Norms and Nobility. Or, if you don’t have or can’t get a copy of your own, consider this your Cliff’s Notes version. ? Previous post: Preface Next post: chapter 1, section 1 The prologue primarily addresses the dichotomy between the modern view of man and his role and the traditional, classical view. Or, as James K.A. Smith has written, “Every pedagogy assumes an anthropology.” What you believe about man shapes how you educate. Classical education … Read More

Studies for the sake of the church – Rhabanus Maurus on the liberal arts

No, I didn’t know who he was either, before reading this next selection from The Great Tradition: Classical Writings on What It Means to Be an Educated Human Being. Rhabanus Maurus was a Germanic monk who studied under Alcuin at Tours. In fact, the name Maurus is an honorific given him by Alcuin. He was deeply learned; read Scripture, the Church Fathers, as well as Greek & Roman literature; he wrote commentaries as well as textbooks on the liberal arts. … Read More

Dear Mom who wants to give her 5-year-old a classical education

Have you ever noticed? The most eager homeschooling moms are those whose oldest child is 4 or 5? I was one, myself. And when I felt the eye-roll behind the smile of older, deep-in-the-trenches moms, I bristled. “Take me seriously!” I wanted to plead. I knew they were sharing wisdom when they told me to back off and wait and just enjoy the young years. I browsed their shelves, watched a Math-U-See demonstration, picked their brains. I was in my … Read More

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