Interview with Alan Bloom: A Most Uncommon Scold:

Western civilization, sees "a new kind of thought control" at work.

A professor of political philosophy at the University of Chicago, Bloom unleashed a storm of criticism last year with his book, The Closing of the American Mind, an acidic assault on the way the U.S. educates its young people and on the decline of intellectuality in national life. Liberal academics, defending the trend toward de-emphasis of the classics, responded that Bloom's prescriptions are unsuited to a society as heterogeneous as America's. The book has sold 800,000 copies and has just been issued in paperback. TIME senior correspondent William McWhirter spent four hours with Bloom, 58, surrounded by classic texts and European...

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