Scholarship: Two Convocation Addresses on University Life

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Scholarship: Two Convocation Addresses on University Life

By Abraham Kuyper

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More than a hundred years ago Abraham Kuyper and his followers recognized that knowledge (curriculum) and behavior (pedagogy) are embedded in everyone’s core beliefs about the nature of God, humanity, and the world. Kuyper delivered the two convocation addresses included in this volume to the students of the Vrije Universiteit (Free University) in Amsterdam in 1889 and 1900.

A long and hard fight against modern secularizing forces in education and government had in the end provided serious Christians a place at the table of public conversation and gave historic Christianity a voice in the hallowed halls of the university and the public square. Such was the vision for the Vrije Universiteit, a place of religious liberty and rigorous scientific study where the original ideals of the university could flourish again. Here Kuyper offers his views with incisive analysis, good humor, and common sense that still ring true today.


The translation of Abraham Kuyper’s Scolastica I and II anticipates the publication of a larger collection of Kuyper’s writing s on education under the imprint of Christian’s Library Press and by the generous support of Rimmer DeVries and the Acton Institute. The complete volume will include Kuyper’s important essay entitled “Bound to the Word,” which discusses the topic of what being bound to the Word of God means within the entire world of human thought. The complete volume will also include extracts from important parliamentary speeches by Kuyper on the subject of education, plus a translation of Kuyper’s fifteen articles that appeared in his daily newspaper in 1880 under the title “Antirevolutionary Also in Your Household.” Appended to this series was a sixteenth article entitled “De School” in which Kuyper discussed the significance of the life of the primary school for the state. Additional essays and speeches in this anthology include parts of Kuyper’s 1875 “De schoolkwestie,” parts of the 1885 “Ijzer en leem,” Kuyper’s speech in 1903 to the Christian Teacher’s Association, and additional material on Kuyper’s views on vouchers.

The above is only a partial listing of the components of this groundbreaking anthology. This forthcoming, larger collection by no means exhausts Kuyper’s educational reflections. It will, however, make available in English a substantial amount of the thought on education by one of the most dynamic figures of the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries.

Additional Information

Edited By Stephen J. Grabill
Translated By Harry Van Dyke
ISBN 978-1-938948-85-5
Page Count 51
Publisher Christian's Library Press
Year Published 2014
Book Excerpt N/A
SKU 1441

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