On the Emancipation of Frederick Douglass by Means of Liberal Education
True wisdom has suggested that the only way to find one’s real self is, paradoxically, to get out of oneself, “to be beside oneself,” as philosopher Josef Pieper phrased it.
Our popular culture promotes the injurious fiction that the world is all about me, myself, and my ephemeral needs, a temptation that American culture has confronted for a long time. But a true liberal arts education can provide an escape from such alienation and loneliness—and boredom. A true liberal education is a way to discover that you are not alone.
As we share great texts and ideas and works of art, our vision and expectations can be enlarged. It does take work, and a peculiar...