Nexus Library

Universitas?

George Steiner

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  • Nexus Library, volume IX
  • Bilingual edition
  • Translation Hein Groen en Gijs Went

In our times, there are still educational institutions which call themselves universities. But do they still have a claim to universitas, the all-encompassing ideal of knowledge which the West inherited from Athens and Rome? In an unequalled indictment of the spirit of our times, George Steiner, world-renowned literary scholar and cultural critic, lectures modern universities. His criticism contains an exhortation to us all.

About the author

George Steiner

France, 1929 - 2020
George Steiner was one of the greatest European humanists of our times. Having fled the increasing anti-Semitic violence in Europe, he spent a large part of his youth in the United States. There, he studied linguistics and humanities, finishing his studies at Harvard and Oxford. He held professorships in the United States, England, Austria and Switzerland and wrote essays and literary criticism for publications such as The Guardian and The New Yorker. In his essays, he dealt with literature, ethics, social developments and radical evil. Among his large oeuvre, Language and Silence (1967), After Babel (1975) and Real Presences (1986) stand out. In 2011 The Poetry of Thought was published. The Nexus Institute published the highly influential lecture The Idea of Europe (2004) and Universitas? (2013). Im Raum der Stille: Lektüren (2010) is discussed in Nexus Review.