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A Free and Ordered Space: The Real World of the University Paperback – May 17, 1990

5 out of 5 stars 1 customer review

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Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

In this collection of essays, based on addresses given in the late '70s and '80s to Yale students, the emphasis is on academic mission, on what Giamatti terms "civility." "Eloquent in support of the values of a liberal education, these essays bespeak the product of such formation, a man at ease with the cultural flow of past and present," stated PW.
Copyright 1990 Reed Business Information, Inc.

About the Author

A. Bartlett Giamatti, at the time of his death Commissioner of Baseball, was a former professor of English and president of Yale University.
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 312 pages
  • Publisher: W. W. Norton & Company (May 17, 1990)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0393306712
  • ISBN-13: 978-0393306712
  • Product Dimensions: 0.6 x 0.1 x 0.8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 13.6 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,672,263 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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It is sometimes argued that higher education fails to define and defend itself, that it endlessly asks for resources but neglects to explain the need for those resources and the uses (proper uses, one hopes) that will be made of them.

That argument is often made by people who have forgotten the explanations offered in the past. For those who would like to hear the case made both eloquently and authoritatively, I can recommend this book.

When Giamatti was made president of Yale he was very young (the youngest president in the university's history) and he had virtually no administrative experience. Nevertheless, he served with great distinction and went on, as most remember, to serve as Commissioner of baseball, prior to his premature death.

This book is a collection of his speeches. As such, they carry a certain formality. One can hear the public address system and see the presidential robes in place as he addresses his audiences (many of them student audiences). They are organized around three topics: 1) the nature and purpose of the university; 2) the `earthly use' of a liberal education; and 3) the private university and the public interest. All three are worth the reader's attention; the second is probably the best.

While his historic audience is usually some group of Yale stakeholders or students, the actual audience for his thoughts is the educated reader who cares about the state of higher education. He draws on literary materials (his field was renaissance literature) but on many other materials as well.
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A Free and Ordered Space: The Real World of the University
This item: A Free and Ordered Space: The Real World of the University
Price: $28.29
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