"The Thinker"--Commending Philosophy Today
Consider three salient factors to his approach.
1. He is a demanding teacher who requires immersion in primary sources. It is Aristocratic, not democratic.
2. His commitment is to the discipline of philosophy first. This chimes in with Roger Scruton's claim in Culture Counts that knowledge needs students, the traditions must be handed down. This cuts against the "student-centered learning" craze of recent years, an approach that too-often results in pedagogical fads and technological diversions.
3. He fostered a culture of philosophy at Auburn, as opposed to merely offering classes in philosophy.
4. He emphasized the mentor-apprentice model, more than the teacher-student model. This, of course, fits better the biblical understanding of teaching and learning--personal, not impersonal; embodied, not digitized.
All this makes me ponder how my own philosophy department might better commend itself and generate interest in this perennial tradition.