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In Defense of a Liberal Education

Fareed Zakaria expresses his views on the need for a Liberal Arts Education

About the Book

CNN host and best-selling author Fareed Zakaria argues for a renewed commitment to the world’s most valuable educational tradition.

The liberal arts are under attack. The governors of Texas, Florida, and North Carolina have announced that they will not spend taxpayer money subsidizing the liberal arts. Majors like English, once very popular and highly respected, are in steep decline. President Obama recently urged students to keep in mind that technical training could be more valuable than a degree in art history.

In this urgently needed book, Fareed Zakaria argues that this turn away from the liberal arts is a mistake. A liberal education teaches you how to write, how to speak your mind, and how to learn—immensely valuable tools no matter your profession. Technology and globalization are actually making these skills even more valuable as routine mechanical and even computing tasks can be done by machines or workers in low-wage countries. More than just a path to a career, a liberal education is an exercise in freedom. Above all, it is an expression of the most basic urge of the human spirit—to know.



The author, on the value of the liberal arts

Zakaria on Bloomberg: The Value of a Liberal Education (2015) (6:06). 

Harvard Commencement Speech and Biographical Information

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Professor Librarian

Judi Vaughn's picture
Judi Vaughn
LIB 229

Find books on Liberal Education

In order to find books about a liberal education, search under SUBJECT for General Education in the college catalog. Here you should find:

Works on programs of secondary or higher education that include coursework covering areas of knowledge and experience that should be common to all educated people, irrespective of specialization in a subject discipline, to provide the set of skills and knowledge needed to function in society, are entered under General education.

Subject description provided by the Cataloging Section of the Library of Congress.

Liberal Arts Rule!