John E. Ross


One of the changes in college curricula has been the lessening emphasis upon the study of the classics in literature and language. R. Freeman Butts discusses the historical setting of this change in his recent book The College Charts Its Course. Mr. Butts places an emphasis upon two aspects of this condition in education: "the origins of the traditions that a liberal education should be predominantly linguistic and literary in character," and "the rapidly changing social and intellectual conditions of the nineteenth century weakened this conception of a liberal education in the American college and gave rise to many innovations among which the elective system was perhaps most representative." A study of the historical background of this subject reveals that the decline of Greek and Latin has been a long and slow process which has been stimulated in more recent years by the industrial age in which we live.



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