John von Heyking

Reflections on Eva Brann's Paradoxes of Education in a Republic--The General Problem, Part Two
By John von Heyking on July 26, 2010

The meaning of republic itself is paradoxical because the “public thing” (the literal meaning of res publica) assigns a dual position to a citizen as one who, qua member of society, is a part of that society, and qua person, is a dignity that transcends it.  So far, this formulation suggests a close affinity between education in a modern republic with that of Aristotle, who provided the classic statement that the good citizen is not the same as the good human being. 

Brann adds two key observations to show the distinctiveness education in the American republic to that of the ancient republic.


Reflections on Eva Brann's Paradoxes of Education in a Republic--The General Problem, Part One
By John von Heyking on July 19, 2010

The first post in a series of reflections on Eva Brann's brilliant book. Part of a Lehrman series, including Thaddeus Kozinski's reflections on Sertillanges, looking again at important books.


The Thin Red Line Connecting Climategate to the Research University
By John von Heyking on June 03, 2010

Peter Berkowitz of the Hoover Institution recently commented on the intellectual corruption of the modern research university and the role it played in climategate. According to Berkowitz, the modern research university, which has turned research specialization into a pathology, fails to teach students to think. 


Linked-In: The Advantages of Online Networking for Employment
By John von Heyking on May 24, 2010

A recent article at the GlobeCampus blog argues for the utility of the online networking site Linked-In for undergraduate students seeking employment.  It’s a more useful tool than Facebook, which mostly caters to networking for personal reasons.


The Utility of Humanities and Social Sciences
By John von Heyking on May 03, 2010

Students and teachers of the liberal arts who pride themselves on their glorious inutitliy may be selling themselves short, according to a recent article. How many utils is a liberal education worth?


Once Again, Academics Misunderstand Liberal Education and Military Service Connection
By John von Heyking on April 26, 2010

A group of University of Regina academics are protesting a scholarship established at that institution for children of Canadian Armed Forces killed in Afghanistan.  They claim that this scholarship, named “Project Hero,” is a "glorification of Canadian imperialism in Afghanistan."


Ann Coulter, Higher Education, and Canadian Human Rights Tribunals
By John von Heyking on April 16, 2010

“Ann Coulter” and “Higher Education” are two terms usually not associated with one another.  Even so, universities serve as venues for public personalities, and Coulter is one of them. Americans have made passing note of a recent controversy involving Coulter’s speaking event at the University of Ottawa.  It’s all over the news in Canada.


The Canadian Alternative in Higher Education?
By John von Heyking on April 07, 2010

In 2009, the Canadian embassy in Washington estimated that 10,000 Americans would head north to get a university education in Canada. The reasons? Canada's top universities, including McGill and the University of Toronto, charge less tuition than top flagship state schools in the U.S.


The Meritocracy as an Asperger's Convention
By John von Heyking on March 25, 2010

David Brooks’s recent New York Times editorial on the problems of our contemporary meritocracy in the United States recalls an earlier editorial he penned in the wake of the Eliot Spitzer scandal on the character flaws that Ivy League universities promote.


Religious Universities and Bureaucrats
By John von Heyking on March 15, 2010

Last month the Canadian Association of University Teachers set out to investigate Trinity Western University for its initiative to require faculty to take an oath affirming their Christian faith. CAUT worries that this requirement is an infringement on academic freedom, and has received support from those who are confident that the process of secularization will soon make the religious university obsolete.


about the author

John von Heyking
John von Heyking

I teach political philosophy at the University of Lethbridge, Alberta, as well as religion and politics. I received my Ph.D. from the University of Notre Dame in 1999.

My publications include Augustine and Politics as Longing in the World (Missouri, 2001), Civil Religion in Political Thought:  Its Perennial Questions and Enduring Relevance in North America (coeditor; published by CUA Press, 2010), Friendship and Politics: Essays in Political Thought (coeditor, published with U. of Notre Dame Press, 2008), two edited volumes of The Collected Works of Eric Voegelin (Missouri, 2003), as well as articles on Aristotle and friendship, political representation, citizenship, republicanism, just war, Islamic politics, politics and prophecy, leadership, the place of America in contemporary political thought, religious liberty under Canada's Charter of Rights and Freedoms, and the political philosophy of rodeo. I am also at work on a book-length study on the relationship between friendship and political order. My editorials have appeared in the Globe and Mail (Toronto), Calgary Herald, C2C: Canada’s Journal of Ideas, and the Ashbrook Center for Public Affairs. I am currently Associate Editor for History, Theory, and Law of the journal, Politics and Religion, published by Cambridge University Press. His work has been translated into Italian, German, and Chinese. I have delivered invited lectures to audiences throughout Canada and the United States, as well as in Germany, France, Switzerland, and Russia.