I have worked at Acadia University since 2001, as the c16th and c17th poetry and prose specialist in the Department of English and Theatre.



''Let us always remind ourselves that universities are, or should be, radical enterprises: radical because they are based on the proposition that the world can and must be transformed into something better, radical because they are based on the proposition that [people] through [their] intellect, [thier] initiative, and [their] integrity can advance [our . . .] well-being. Universities, if they are functioning as they should, are predisposed to question, to debate, to change, to criticize, and to challenge'' (Robert W. Morse, President, Case Western Reserve University. 'Of Tempest and Trust.' Keynote address delivered July 13, 1970, to The American Alumni Council Annual National Conference, New Orleans. The full text of Dr. Morse's speech is available here).


''Learning we thank, genius we revere; That gives us pleasure, This gives us rapture; That informs, This inspires; and is itself inspired; for genius is from heaven, learning from man: This sets us above the low, and illiterate; That, above the learned, and polite. Learning is borrowed knowledge; genius is knowledge innate, and quite our own'' (Edward Young Conjectures on Original Composition [1759]: 17).

To which I would add: learning is provided through instruction and training (as at a community college) and genius is accessed and acquired through education (as at a university). What a pity twenty-first-century politicians and administrators want students and society to opt for learning rather than education.


'If you look at the history of higher education, the university was controlled by, and had to fight for intellectual purity against, the church; then it had to fight against the crown; and now it's against the corporation. There has always been a tension between the university and the funding source that could control the thought. We always have to say that the earth goes around the sun even if it doesn't comport with what the Holy Father says.' Gordon Davies, qtd. in David Kirp's Shakespeare, Einstein, and the Bottom Line, 144 - 5.

Office: BAC 431
Office phone: 585-1345
Email: richard.cunningham[at]acadiau.ca



Richard Cunningham Richard Cunningham Basil is a Mastiff