Education: How to Kill a University

"The victory cannot be far," sang the somber chorus. "The world then becomes a Red star." The tumid cantata swelled across the famed campus; Communist Germany's goat-bearded Party Boss Walter Ulbricht smiled. It was the 550th anniversary of his home-town university, and what he had done to it made him proud. Since 1953, Leipzig University has been called Karl-Marx University, "model of the socialist type of university." Last week Leipzig, which took six centuries to build, was a model of how to kill a great institution in six years.

Founded in 1409 by Germans who felt themselves discriminated against at Prague's Charles...

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