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The Open MindCold War Politics and the Sciences of Human Nature$
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Jamie Cohen-Cole

Print publication date: 2014

Print ISBN-13: 9780226092164

Published to Chicago Scholarship Online: September 2014

DOI: 10.7208/chicago/9780226092331.001.0001

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The Academy as Model of America

The Academy as Model of America

(p.104) Chapter Four The Academy as Model of America
The Open Mind

Jamie Cohen-Cole

University of Chicago Press

By looking at the relationship between daily personal experience and social thought, this chapter examines how the social structure academics sought for reforming academic culture reflected the political and social visions they held for America. Political sentiments provided a language for discussing and regulating the functions of intellectual social life. In their own community, intellectuals developed standards of comportment, self-presentation, intelligence, creativity, and right-mindedness which they used to police their social lives. They enacted and articulated these standards in their writing and in face-to-face in modern-day interdisciplinary “salons.” The visceral experiences that intellectuals had day-to-day in dinner clubs, discussion groups, as well as interdisciplinary study groups and conferences functioned as models when they developed accounts of American society. Their social vision of the nation was grounded in the kinds of interpersonal interaction that they practiced and valued in their own professional lives.

Keywords:   small group, conference, community, academic culture

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