2 Matching Annotations
  1. Oct 2017
    1. What, but education, has advanced us beyond the condition of our indigenous neighbours? and what chains them to their present state of barbarism & wretchedness, but a besotted veneration for the supposed supe[r]lative wisdom of their fathers and the preposterous idea that they are to look backward for better things and not forward, longing, as it should seem, to return to the days of eating acorns and roots rather than indulge in the degeneracies of civilization

      I believe that the "indigenous neighbors" that the authors are referring to are not the impoverished or the uneducated, but the Native Americans. At this time, they were still considered barbaric savages simply because they had developed different languages, traditions, and cultures. The authors continue to utilize words with extremely negative connotations, such as "wretchedness", "besotted", and "degeneracies" to better express the idea that education and knowledge are the most important things one could possibly gain - a society that has not employed the Western model of education is a primitive one.<br> These scholars were so focused upon educating people in the sciences and humanities, but were close-minded when it came to learning about others' cultures. There is no 'right' way to be educated. Nowadays, I am pleased to see the existence of many different Anthropology classes that teach us about many different ways of life. UVA has most definitely improved in terms of awareness and open-mindedness.

    2. were that the French is the language of general intercourse among nations, and as a depository of human Science is unsurpassed by any other language living or dead: that the Spanish is highly interesting to us, as the language spoken by so great a portion of the inhabitants of our Continents, with whom we shall possibly have great intercourse ere long; and is that also in which is written the greater part of the early history of America. The Italian abounds with works of Very superior Order, Valuable for their matter, and still more 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.

      It is clear that the founders of the University took language very seriously, and incorporated it to a great extent into the curriculum. Although UVA, being a predominantly arts/sciences school, does indeed still consider language to be important, English is the one that is most focused upon.<br> Learning or continuing to learn a language at UVA is definitely encouraged, but oftentimes is not required - and I know that many people choose not to take one simply because they don't want to.<br> One of the things that I agree on in the Rockfish Gap is that learning a language should be something that every student must do; additionally, we must stop considering English to be the superior language and understand that each language is every bit as complicated and useful as ours. I admire how the founders took the time to explain how each language - French, Spanish, German, etc. - has contributed to the development of society.