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Adam Car­rington teaches pol­itics at Hillsdale College. | Hillsdale College Website

I read with interest the Oct. 24 Col­legian article, “‘So Much More’: Stu­dents share why they left their pol­itics major.” The per­spective pre­sented rested on the assumption that pol­itics as studied at Hillsdale College falls outside a “true” liberal-arts edu­cation. I find this assumption deeply inac­curate, not to mention trou­bling.

A liberal-arts edu­cation seeks to cul­tivate persons as both human beings and as cit­izens. Pol­itics, as Aris­totle explained, is fun­da­mental to this endeavor. Pol­itics inves­ti­gates human nature, the def­i­n­ition of justice, as well as the manner, structure, and pur­poses of com­munity.

Our department pursues these inquiries every semester. We do so by rig­or­ously con­sulting a wide variety of thinkers, including Plato, Locke, Shake­speare, and Niet­zsche, alongside Hamilton, Madison, Lincoln, and Woodrow Wilson. These classes cer­tainly involve dis­cus­sions and appli­ca­tions to our own time.

But to do so merely rec­og­nizes the fol­lowing: the liberal arts were made for life and for man, not life and man for the liberal arts.

Adam Car­rington is an assistant pro­fessor of pol­itics at Hillsdale College.