John Lilburne's journal about a liberal education and some photos.
1923 L Fri 4 Jan 2002
Page 11 of The Age newspaper today has an interesting article today by John Schumann. He is described as "a writer and musician best known for his work in the Australian folk-rock band Redgum". I thought they were a good band and I have at least one of their CDs. I saw them in a free concert on the Yarra river at Moomba years ago.
Today he is a parent with a son having finished Year 12. He is off to talk to him about "English literature, logic, epistemology and Latin". His concern is that "the broad-based liberal education, so long the mainstay of Australian intellectual life, is on the brink of extinction." In talking at universities he has "been struck, time and time again, by the polite indifference on the part of most students to any sort of intellectual discussion that does not directly and immediately relate to the pursuit of their vocational qualification."
My educational choices reflect similar concerns. I studied engineering from 1985 to 1988. In the last three years my studies in theology have included "logic, epistemology and Latin". For the first 18 months this was vocational: for the priesthood. But in continuing it for the last 18 months it reflected a desire for a broader education and participating in intellectual discussions.
Perhaps part of the change is the way debates happen today: on the internet, by email, rather than with bands.
Here are some of my photos I collected today and have scanned.
I think this bird is a rosella.
The flower in this photo is called a Bird of Paradise.
Here is the third photo:
Copyright J.R. Lilburne 4 January 2002.