Daniel J. Flynn has written a book entitled Blue Collar Intellectuals: When the Enlightened and the Everyman Elevated America. He writes about a time when “intellectuals” spoke to “the common man,” and how many in the demographic of “common man” (and woman) distinguished themselves as “intellectuals” in their own right. He writes about blue collar savants like Mortimer Adler, Milton Friedman, and Eric Hoffer. All of this contrasts with the tendency today, in which “intellectuals” speak only to themselves in an arcane idiom that no one else can even understand, while the “common man” is content with mindless pop culture pablum. And even intellectuals have become anti-intellectual.
But that’s not what I want to blog about. An excerpt from his book published in the Intercollegiate Review includes a devastating send-up of the state of contemporary education. I offer it to you as a “Back to School” present. [Read more…]