The Decline of the Secular University

The Decline of the Secular University

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Sommerville argues that a secular world view is propagated not just through American higher education, but public education, the media, and the courts despite their professed commitment to neutrality. The triumph of postmodern multiculturalism and the demise of Western Civilization courses, he says, have left students unable to make sense of the world in which they live. Moreover the secular university, again despite professed neutrality, demonstrates the most condescending type of moralizing without nurturing ethical reflection. Sommerville considers how religiously-informed scholarship might enrich various academic disciplines. He examines the market forces that have created what he calls the post-secularist university but may also have opened the door for theologians to challenge the prevailing nihilism. Finally, he invites the reader to imagine a university where religion is not ruled out but rather welcomed at least as one legitimate voice among others. Sommervilles bracing and provocative argument is sure to provoke controversy and stimulate discussion both inside and outside the academy.
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Product details

  • Hardback | 160 pages
  • 142.2 x 210.8 x 20.3mm | 294.84g
  • Oxford University Press Inc
  • New York, United States
  • English
  • 0195306953
  • 9780195306958
  • 930,767

Review quote

This thoughtful book should be a must-[read] * Richard V. Pierard, Theological Book Review *
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About C. John Sommerville

C. John Sommerville is Professor Emeritus of History at the University of Florida. A Member of the Institute of Advanced Study at Princeton and Senior Fellow at Harvard's Center for the Study of World Religions, he also recently contributed to the Pew Younger Scholars' Mentoring Program. He is the author of several books, including The Secularization of Early Modern England: From Religious Culture to Religious Faith, The News Revolution in England: Cultural Dynamics of Daily Information, and The Rise and Fall of Childhood.
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Rating details

23 ratings
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5 30% (7)
4 43% (10)
3 22% (5)
2 4% (1)
1 0% (0)
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