Liberal Education Essays and Research Papers

Instructions for Liberal Education College Essay Examples

Title: Who if anyone needs a liberal education

  • Total Pages: 3
  • Words: 1129
  • Sources:7
  • Citation Style: APA
  • Document Type: Essay
Essay Instructions: Type: Persuasive Essay
Title: Who, if anyone, needs a liberal education?
Length: 1000 words but no more than 1100

Intro: Take a stance on which individuals need a liberal education.

-Define Liberal Education
-Please note that liberal education is not the same as liberal arts.

-Explain the Advantages and Disadvantages of a liberal education.


-The paper must be unique. I cant risk anyone else having the same paper.
-The sources can not be all online sources.
-No contractions in the essay.
-APA citations & references.
-Liberal education is not the same as liberal arts.

[ Order Custom Essay ]

[ View Full Essay ]

Excerpt From Essay:


Davidson, K. (1999). Carl Sagan: A Life. New York: Wiley & Sons.

Dershowitz, a. (2002). Shouting Fire: Civil Liberties in a Turbulent Age. New York:

Simon & Schuster.

Feldman, N. (2005). Divided by God: America's Church and State Problem and What

We Should Do about it. New York: Farrar, Straus, & Giroux.

Feynman, M. (2005). Perfectly Reasonable Deviations: The Letters of Richard

Feynman. New York: Basic Books.

Mooney, C. (2005). The Republican War on Science. New York: Basic Books.

Rooney, a. (2006). Einstein: In His Own Words. New York: Gramercy Books.

Russell, B. (1961). The Basic Writings of Bertrand Russell. London, UK: Routledge.

Order Custom Essay On This Topic

Title: Liberal arts education

  • Total Pages: 4
  • Words: 1418
  • References:3
  • Citation Style: MLA
  • Document Type: Research Paper
Essay Instructions: Answer only one of the following questions:

1. Is it worthwhile for you to personally get a liberal education?
2. Why, if at all, is a liberal education valuable?

Plan and write an essay of approximately 1200 words in which you:

a) explain the question, as you understand it;
b) clearly state a specific answer to that question;
c) give one or more good arguments for that answer;
d) consider at least one important objection to your answer; and
e) respond appropriately to the objection(s) you consider.

[ Order Custom Essay ]

[ View Full Essay ]

Excerpt From Essay:


Connor, W.R. Liberal Arts Education in the Twenty-First Century: An AALE Scholars Essay. Washington, DC: American Academy for Liberal Education. Online. Available from Internet,, accessed 24 November 2008

Harris, Robert. 1991. On the Purpose of a Liberal Arts Education. 15 June 2007. Online. Available from Internet,, accessed 24 November 2008.

Rimer, Sara. 2003. Justifying a Liberal Arts Education in Difficult Times. The New York Times. 19 February. Online. Available from Internet,,accessed 24 November 2008.

Smith, William L., Ph.D. The Importance of Liberal Arts Education: In a Knowledge-Based Economy. Online. Available from Internet,,accessed 24 November 2008

Cited in, Liberal Education: The term 'liberal arts' is a college or curriculum aimed at imparting general knowledge and developing intellectual capacities, in contrast to a professional, vocational, or technical curriculum. In classical antiquity, the term designated the education proper to a freeman (Latin: liber, "free") as opposed to a slave. Martianus Capella (5th century AD) defines the seven Liberal Arts as grammar, dialectic, rhetoric and geometry, arithmetic, astronomy, music. In the medieval Western university, the seven liberal arts were: the Trivium: grammar, rhetoric, logic; the Quadrivium: geometry, arithmetic, music, astronomy.

In modern colleges and universities, the liberal arts include the study of art, literature, languages, philosophy, politics, history, mathematics, and science.

Connor, W.R. Liberal Arts Education in the Twenty-First Century: An AALE Scholars Essay. Washington, DC: American Academy for Liberal Education.

Robert Harris. 1991. On the Purpose of Liberal Arts Education.

William L. Smith Ph.D. The Importance of Liberal Arts Education: In a Knowledge-Based Economy.

Andrew Chrucky: "The aim of liberal education is to create persons who have the ability and the disposition to try to reach agreements on matters of fact, theory, and actions through rational discussions." Cited in Wikipedia,

Sara Rimer. 2003. Justifying a Liberal Arts Education in Difficult Times. The New York Times. 19 February.

Order Custom Essay On This Topic

Title: john Stuart Mill

  • Total Pages: 2
  • Words: 752
  • Works Cited:2
  • Citation Style: APA
  • Document Type: Essay
Essay Instructions: In his “Inaugural Address at St. Andrews” (in the Cahn anthology), John Stuart Mill discusses ideas that are important for the education of pre-college students as well as for college students (although his focus is on the college/university level). Drawing on this text and the readings on Jefferson (chapter 12) and Mill (chapter 17) in Gutek,
1) What are some of Mill’s fundamental ideas that pertain to the need for a liberal education in secondary school and college?

2) What do you find in Mill that relates to the importance of including attention to diverse cultures in education, that is, what are the specific grounds he gives for the importance of studying diverse cultures and languages?

3) How do the ideas on education of Locke, Jefferson and Mill relate to one another and to the importance of education for a democratic society such as our own?

1-"Historical and philosophical foundations of Education: A Bibliographical Introduction", by Gerald l. Gutek( 4th Ed)
Chapter 17: John Stuart Mill: Proponent of Liberalism
2-"Classic and Contemporary Readings in the Philosophy of Education", by Steven m. Cahn
John Stuart Mill" Inauguration at St. Andrews"(p223-260)

[ Order Custom Essay ]

[ View Full Essay ]

Excerpt From Essay:
Order Custom Essay On This Topic

Title: Tolerance and its Limits

  • Total Pages: 8
  • Words: 2465
  • Bibliography:8
  • Citation Style: MLA
  • Document Type: Research Paper
Essay Instructions: Tolerance and its Limits
In the introductory theoretical lectures we will look at some different ways of responding to a major tension or dilemma that we encounter in modern democratic societies. The dilemma is:
• How can we describe ourselves as a society, as having certain kinds of shared values and common interests, while at the same time respecting the profound cultural and ethical differences that separate us?
• Does not each attempt to formulate or express our connectedness, our sense of the ties that bind us, threaten to compromise our commitment to the principle of respect for difference?
I want to set one particular theoretical and practical response to this dilemma on the table by looking at the liberal ideal of tolerance, but before we turn to this it might be useful if we first remind ourselves about some of the general reflections we were making about the underlying question of the unit: the question or dilemma of how we can describe or represent what unites us, what brings us together, in terms that respect and support our differences as groups and as individuals. I drew attention to three main features of this underlying question or dilemma:
• Firstly that it is an historical issue or tension. Only in societies where our interactions have ceased to be structured and secured around the reproduction of traditional ties and convention-bound ways of doing things can we even start to think about what it is that unites us. There are now a range of competing ways of describing what it is we share and we now have the challenge and the opportunity to think about what is the best way of describing what draws us together. This is a feature of modern intimate interactions, not just our wider cultural social interactions. The meaning of our personal bonds are now up for negotiation in ways that were not possible in traditional societies - even the most conventional of our relationships now allows us to think through a range of options. If we need to think about what it is that draws us together into our intimacies and as a society and as a world, what is going to be the test or measure of these descriptions? We will need to negotiate the modern idea of respect for difference and individuality. Again this is something that confronts us in our intimate as well as our wider social interactions.
• Secondly, why or in what circumstances does this effort to reflect upon what it is that draws us together emerge for us as something that requires to be negotiated? We come to reflect upon/attempt to negotiate our common ground in response to problems. At a societal level it seems that we need to be able find the common ground so that we can forge social policies and move forward with mutually beneficial responses to the future.
• Thirdly, this challenge is not only vital but it is difficult. Why is this so? When we think of the alternatives, such as a clash of fundamentalisms, we can see how necessary this task is. At the same time we cannot minimize the difficulties. How are we going to forge interactions based on descriptions of what we share that support our differences, that do not simply amount to a world view that seeks to impose itself as the unifying perspective?
One radical response to this dilemma is simply to forgo the task of reflecting upon what it is that unites us, what brings us together as a society. If we abandon all attempts to think through our connectedness with others what might be the result? Wouldn't we end up with an image of society as a battle-ground between competing interests? How would we formulate social policies? Under such conditions, life, as the great 17th century English philosopher Thomas Hobbes feared, might well become ‘nasty, brutish and short’, a ‘war of each against all’.
But while it seems necessary that a civilised society must reflect upon the character of its common values and shared principles so we can negotiate the task of living with each other, in modern liberal societies we are also committed to the respect for difference. How are we going to try to accommodate these two types of imperatives? How can we elaborate shared or common values in terms that encompass a respect for difference? This is the main question we will be considering.
In the first module we explore some of the different attempts to reflect upon this apparent dilemma of modern life. In later modules of the unit we will be considering ways in which it has been encountered in various spheres and levels of interaction in contemporary societies. The classical liberal tradition has maintained that its ideal of toleration offers a compelling way of responding to this dilemma of how to think about what we share as a society in terms that are consistent with a pluralistic respect for difference. We will be looking at some aspects of the strengths and limits of liberal tolerance in this session. The primary aim will be to invite you to think about some of the assumptions, implications and the function of an ideal that has had a major role in shaping our ideas of a civilised society.
I will give a very sketchy overview of the history of the ideal of tolerance as a point of orientation. We also need to open up some lines of enquiry. For instance: does the liberal idea of toleration go far enough in its interpretation of the meaning of respect for the difference of the other? We will explore this question through some illustrations and examples. For modern Australia, confronted with on-going debates about our multicultural character and deeply disturbed about the situation of indigenous Australians, it seems timely that we should be reflecting upon the limits and shortcomings of tolerance as an ideal.
o 17th century: John Locke argued for religious tolerance on pragmatic grounds (to protect the state from strife)
o 18th century: challenged the containment of diverse points of view in a private sphere (Enlightenment)
o 19th century: J.S Mill argued for a principled commitment to right to privacy
want to make two general points by way of a broad introduction to the idea of toleration.
Firstly, the liberal idea of toleration offers itself as a general principle through which social conduct and social arrangements might best be regulated and organised in terms consistent with an acceptance of the fact of modern pluralism and diversity. In liberal democratic societies the idea of toleration has functioned as the general expectation through which the community has expressed its acceptance of the fact of human diversity and difference. The ideal of toleration suggests a general strategy for the mutual accommodation of difference.
The main point here is that liberal democratic societies use the general principle of tolerance to represent a unifying or shared commitment. This is carried by the idea of the citizen. The citizen is the public actor, the bearer of the ideal of the common good, but his/her function is seen to be limited to the role of protecting the right to private independence. This function is institutionally articulated in the separation of the church (the realm of private faith) from the state (the realm of public/common interest). The general principle of toleration for others suggests a way of regulating social interaction in a heterogeneous social world in terms which both permit the expression of individual and cultural diversity while at the same time acknowledging that we do have shared bonds. The principle of toleration expresses our sense of our mutual responsibilities.
Secondly, this is an ideal of solidarity that specifies what is referred to as a ‘cool’ type of connection. A ‘warm’ solidarity suggests that we can identify with and empathise with others because we see them as being essentially the 'same' as us. By contrast, a 'cool' notion of solidarity suggests that we don't see our connectedness with others in terms of concrete and particular things that we have in common. 'Cool' solidarity suggests that we are tied to others by formal and abstract principles ??" like the notion of 'justice for all' or the 'equality of all individuals'. The liberal principle of tolerance is of this latter type. It specifies that we should, as a matter of principle, accommodate and ‘live with’ private difference as long as it does not impinge on the rights of others. This is a general principle of forbearance in the face of private difference gives us a language we can use to communicate with those who seem to have radically different histories from us about what might be the appropriate mode of conduct between us.
Part 2: Episodes in the History of the Principle of Liberal Tolerance
The modern idea of toleration was first developed as a general principle in the 17th century. At this time the idea of toleration was associated with a battle around the cause of religious freedoms. The 17th century English philosopher, John Locke (1632-1704) insisted on the necessity for a legally respected distinction between the spheres of civil life and spiritual life and, while government could properly intervene in the former (to regulate social interactions, defend private property legality, etc.) it must show forbearance towards the latter.
This was seen as an important movement towards the limitation of the authority of the sovereign to 'what will best promote the peace and safety and happiness of his subjects'.
Specifically, the 17th century principle of religious toleration was argued for on principally pragmatic grounds -forbearance in the face of religious diversity was seen as a way of protecting the state from the damaging effects of religious dissent. It was, then, principally couched in terms of a strategy of containment of strife. A policy of non-intervention, leaving religious convictions as a matter for the individual's own conscience, was seen as being the best way of protecting the power and authority of the state.
Pragmatism: deals with things in a way that is based on practical rather than theoretical considerations. In philosophy, the idea is associated with an approach that evaluates theories or beliefs in terms of the success of their practical applications.
While many philosophical arguments are said to be made according to principle and to have universal application, they often have their roots in pragmatic considerations. They come to assume the status of a principle largely because the particular circumstance of their initial articulation has either been forgotten or has subsequently been broadened.
What is going on here is an attempt to make a distinction between those matters that referred only to the private interests of the individual (such as religious matters) and those matters (such as legality and the protection of private property) that public authority could appropriately intervene in.
Part 2: Episodes in the History of the Principle of Liberal Tolerance (Continued)
The 18th century saw a partial break down of this attempt to separate those matters of public or common concern from those that pertained to the private autonomy of the individual.
The period saw the rule of the bourgeoisie becoming more entrenched and widespread. This new class of rising entrepreneurs increasingly wanted to be recognised as themselves having a stake in the way in which matters of shared or common concern were described. They became, therefore, increasingly tense with this (17th century) way of managing dissent by attempting to freeze it into a private sphere quarantined from public discussion.
The birth of the public sphere in 18th century Europe suggested a breakdown of this conception of a clear distinction between the private and the public perspectives. The public or shared point of view was, rather, to emerge out of the discussion and arguments between private points of view. If you want to follow up on this theme of the shifts in the way in which the principle of tolerance was perceived from the 17th to 18th century Europe please refer to the essay by Herbert Marcuse 'Repressive Tolerance' in A Critique of Pure Tolerance edited by Robert Wolff et al (Boston: Beacon Press, 1969 - in e-Reserve) This period, known as the period of Enlightenment, began to invest faith in the capacity of individuals to exercise reason and good judgement. Tolerance is not simply forbearance, but a willingness to listen to the point of view of the other and to build up shared understandings through which his/her perspective could be made intelligible and appear reasonable.
The next vital episode in this potted history of the modern idea of toleration suggested a movement back to the description of toleration as a passive virtue (based on forbearance not on trying to build up understandings with the difference of the other).There are, however, significant differences between the 17th century idea, motivated by a concern about stifling the impact of religious strife and the classical liberalism of the 19th century formulation of the principle of toleration.
Part 2: Episodes in the History of the Principle of Liberal Tolerance (Continued)

Photo: John Stuart Mill
Source: Gertrude Himmelfarb, On Liberty and Liberalism: The Case of John Stuart Mill. Alfred A Knopf (1974) It was not until the 19th century that the idea of toleration became articulated as a general principle. A principle motivated not by pragmatic arguments (that is using the idea of tolerance to achieve certain ends) but as a good in its own right.
The British political philosopher J.S. Mill (1806-1873), a 'father' to the classical liberal tradition, attempted to articulate the idea of toleration as a principled commitment to the right of every private individual to pursue his/her own idea of the good, the happy life free from the intervention of officious social power. The principal duty of government was to ensure that the private individual could remain free from all imposed constructions of the good, the happy life.
There have been many critics of this classical liberal formulation of toleration.
Do you have any suggestions about what these might have been?
In the first place, can you think of any possible internal problems that this principled commitment to the ideal of tolerance - seen as forbearance towards a difference that is allowed to flourish in the private sphere - might encounter?
We can call our comments criticisms of a theory if they focus on the question of its consistency. Does, for example, the theory have implications/conclusions that are inconsistent with its own assumptions? What would a criticism look like? This would suggest that the theory has assumptions or suggests consequences that the critic thinks are not acceptable when judged from some kind of other perspective or idea of the good. (Here is where 'because ...' is a useful question to ask - it helps to reveal the implications in a text).
Part 2: Episodes in the History of the Principle of Liberal Tolerance (Continued)
Some major criticisms have been set up in terms that are internal to the liberal concept of tolerance itself. The liberal ideal of tolerance is seen as not a very coherent principle. Mill makes a distinction between 'self-regarding' actions that should be permitted free from interference and regulation and 'other-regarding' actions that are seen to impose on the private rights of others and are, accordingly, subject to legitimate regulation. But this seems a very imprecise distinction that is unable to offer guidance in many 'grey areas'. When (under what circumstances) do we say that somebody's actions are simply private and must be tolerated and when do we suggest that these actions have a wider/public significance and must, hence, be considered open to regulation and control?
For example, should the principle of forbearance hold towards hard-drug takers in our society? But what of arguments that the actions of such people do various sorts of harms to others - like setting a bad example, loss of productive capacities etc?
Aside from this kind of objection, there are problems with some of the assumptions that are built into the interpretation of the principle. The critics argue that the idea of the separation between the private and the public that underpins the classical liberal understanding of tolerance is based on some prejudicial assumptions. That is, it is an assumption that advantages certain types of individuals and disadvantages others.
Part 2: Episodes in the History of the Principle of Liberal Tolerance (Continued)
It is prejudiced and discriminatory in terms of its conception of the role of the citizen who is the public actor required to adopt a disinterested, impartial perspective. It is the citizen's role to protect the private rights of the individual to pursue his/her own idea of the good free from control and interference. Have you noticed that our court-houses portray justice as a blind-folded figure. This is to represent the idea of disinterest and impartiality.
What are some of the discriminatory assumptions that underlie Mills' conception of the role of the citizen? The citizen, as the guardian of the principle of toleration, is seen to be a role that requires an impartial disinterested point of view of the whole.
Who, then, (what part of the population) did he see as being properly endowed with the ability to adopt an impartial and disinterested point of view? Only those with a liberal education would, he supposed, be able to adopt a disinterested point of view on the good of the social whole. He advocated a system of plural voting (multiple votes for those with education) to ensure that decision-making fell into the correct hands.
One of the great threats which J.S Mill saw to the individual's independence in 19th century Britain was the 'unenlightened opinion' becoming politically assertive -the spectre of a growing and politically organised working class. The duty of the citizen was, he argued, to protect the private individual from the coercive power of an unenlightened and narrowly sectarian working class movement. Only a liberal education could produce this. (We can see that pragmatic interests may lurk behind this apparently generalised philosophical argument).
The citizen in classical liberalism then was not, (as Mill had supposed,) a disinterested figure representative of the public good standing about particular interests. The citizen was the educated middle class.
Not only are there discriminatory assumptions built into Mills' conception of the citizen (public actor) but there are prejudices built into his conception of the autonomy of private individual as well.
Despite its emphasis that each should be author of his/her idea of the good, the happy life, the classical liberal idea of toleration does in fact rest upon and try and impose as universal a certain way of understanding what our autonomy means. That is, because it bases itself on the idea of forbearance towards a private difference, it suggests that each must be held responsible for meeting his/her needs by means of his/her private endeavours. But only certain types of people have the capacity to realise their aspirations and met their own needs without calling upon shared resources.
The implication that everyone can be autonomous (realise their aspirations) if left to themselves suggests a narrow, prejudicial-class-based outlook.
What an active working class that was emerging throughout the 19th century demanded was not simply toleration, forbearance towards their aspirations but an adequate share of collective or public resources able to satisfy their needs. The liberal idea of toleration is, then, not adequate to protect the right to difference of all equally. It does not, according to its critics, suggest a universal principle. This attitude of forbearance is adequate only to protect the difference of those who feel that they are able to pursue their ideas of the good and the happy life by using their own resources. As we will see, this kind of argument about the discriminatory assumptions built into the liberal idea of tolerance is at the back of a number of the contemporary debates around how best to formulate the idea of tolerance.
• Your answer is expected to be in essay form
• Your answer should show evidence of reading beyond set readings and lectures. You should aim for at least 6-8 references.

Required Readings
Stevenson, Andrew (2003), ‘The word that built a nation’ Sydney Morning Herald January 11-12, 8-9.
Horne, Donald (2002), ‘Best-case scenario’ Sydney Morning Herald November 9-10, 4-5.
Nowra, Louis (2008), ‘Indifference has robbed generations of our history’ Sydney Morning Herald Dec 27.
Obama, Barack (2006), Chapter 7: ‘Race’, in The Audacity of Hope: Thoughts on Reclaiming the American Dream, New York: Crown Publishers.
Horton, John (1996), ‘Toleration as a Virtue’ in David Heyd (ed.) Toleration: An Elusive Virtue NJ, Princeton.
Optional Readings:
Adams, Phillip (1997), ‘Introduction’ in Adams (ed.) The Retreat From Tolerance: A Snapshot of Australian Society, Sydney: ABC Books, 7-37.
Walzer, Michael (1997), 'Epilogue: Reflections on American Multicultualism' from On Toleration, New Haven and London, Yale University Press: 93-113

Suggested additional readings:
1. Adams, Phillip (1997), ‘Introduction’ in Adams (ed) The Retreat From Tolerance: A Snapshot of Australian Society, Sydney: ABC Books: 7-37.
2. Forst, R. (2004), ‘The Limits of Toleration’, Constellations, 11(3): 312- 25.
3. Hage, Ghassan (1998), 'Good white nationalists: the tolerant society as a white fantasy', in White Nation: Fantasies of White Supremacy in a Multicultural Society, Sydney: Pluto Press, pp. 78-117.
4. Horton , John (1996) ‘Toleration as a Virtue’ in Heyd , David( ed) Toleration: An Elusive Virtue , Princeton, New Jersey , Princeton Uni. Press.
5. Marcuse, Herbert (1969), 'Repressive Tolerance' in Robert Wolff et al, A Critique of Pure Tolerance, Boston, Beacon Press, 81-123.
Recommended books
1. Brown, Wendy (2006), Regulating Aversion: Tolerance in the Age of Identity and Empire, Princeton, Princeton University Press.
2. Galeotti, Elizabeth (2002), Tolerance as Recognition, Cambridge, Cambridge University Press.
3. Greer, Germaine (2008), on rage, Melbourne University Press.
4. Horne, Donald (2003), 10 steps to a more tolerant Australia, Penguin Australia
5. Lawrence, Carmen (2006), Fear and Politics, Melbourne, Scribe.
6. Mendus, Susan (1989), Toleration and the Limits of Liberalism, London, Macmillan.
7. Walzer, Michael (1997), On Toleration, New Haven and London, Yale University Press.

Please page numbers in Referencing thanks
There are faxes for this order.

[ Order Custom Essay ]

[ View Full Essay ]

Excerpt From Essay:


Blake, Michael. "Religion and Statecraft: Tolerance and Theocracy: How Liberal States Should Think of Religious States." Journal of International Affairs, Fall/Winter 2007: 1-17.

Stetson, Brad and Joseph G. Conti, The Truth about Tolerance: Pluralism, Diversity, and the Culture Wars. Downers Grove, IL: IVP Academic, 2005.

Hinkson, John. "In the name of freedom: is the legacy of September 11 a global anti-liberal ascendancy?" Arena Magazine, February 1, 2002.

Hoodbhoy, Pervez. "The United States and Islam:toward perpetual war?(Views from Russia, Pakistan, Malaysia, and China." Social Research, December 22, 2005.

Kaplan, Benjamin J. Divided by Faith: Religious Conflict and the Practice of Toleration in Early Modern Europe. Cambridge, MA: Belknap Press, 2007.

Reuters. "Middle East Protests: Anti-Government Demonstrations Rock Arab World From Libya to Iran." Huffington Post. February 16, 2011. (accessed May 7, 2011).

Richardson, Louise. What Terrorists Want: Understanding the Enemy, Containing the Threat. New York: Random House, 2007.

Schmid, Alex P. "Root Causes of Terrorism: Some Conceptual Notes, a Set of Indicators, and a Model." Democracy and Security, 2005: 127-136.

Schorow, Stephanie. "Time will tell day's place in history." Boston Herald, September 8, 2002.

Tolerance and its Limits

Order Custom Essay On This Topic
Request A Custom Essay On This Topic Request A Custom Essay
“I really do appreciate I'm not a good writer and the service really gets me going in the right direction. The staff gets back to me quickly with any concerns that I might have and they are always on time.’’ Tiffany R
“I have had all positive experiences with I will recommend your service to everyone I know. Thank you!’’ Charlotte H
“I am finished with school thanks to They really did help me graduate college.’’ Bill K