4 Matching Annotations
  1. Nov 2017
    1. improves what in his nature was vicious & perverse, into qualities of virtue and social worth;

      The writers of this document seem to view education not only as a means of expanding one's knowledge but as a means of improving one's inherent nature from one of evil and corruption to one of goodness and virtue. I find this notion classist and fallacious, as it seems to suggest that those who are not educated (including those who cannot afford education) are inherently worse as people than those who are educated and also that education can fundamentally change who a person is.

    2. distinguished as models of the finest taste in style and composition, and the German now stands in a line with that of the most learned nations in richness of erudition and advance in the sciences

      Phrases like this, which can be found throughout the Rockfish Gap Report here and there, reveal, especially with diction like "finest taste in style and composition," "most learned" and "erudition," that the University has valued class and prestige heavily, even since its founding.

  2. Sep 2017
    1. At the District schools or colleges boys should be rendered able to read the easier Authors, Latin and Greek.

      Ancient language is one of the only fields of study in this report that is listed without much rationale for why it is useful to understand. This point reflects American society (and possibly the societies of other democratic Western nations) at this point in history; students were expected to know ancient languages because society considered them fundamentally useful. This is something that has changed over time, as today our society places much less emphasis on attaining proficiency in ancient languages as a prerequisite to becoming an educated, virtuous citizen.

    2. Also the whole of his Slaves amounting to 57 in number.

      The location of this mentioning of slave labor in the middle of a long list of tracts of land that would have been designated to the University had it been located in Lexington is quite nonchalant in nature. There is really nothing about the structure of this section that differentiates the slaves from just the plain old land; this reflects the racism of both the time period in which our university was founded and of the people who founded it.