A selection of past student testimonies about our seminars.
“These [academic year] seminars were often the highlight of my school week and created a much needed break from my work. The chance to explore intellectual questions in a completely ungraded, relaxed, and conversational environment at Princeton is rare and enriching.”
“Witherspoon is concerned with deep, existential questions that many Princeton students are not exposed to. This year, one Witherspoon seminar got me thinking a lot about philosophy of history. I realized that many Americans, Princeton students included, seem to take some conclusions of philosophy of history for granted. Later in the year I wrote a paper on philosophy of history for a class on Dostoevsky, in part because I was first got interested in it from a Witherspoon seminar. As an engineering student, I appreciate how Witherspoon seminars are accessible but also very meaningful. Overall I would say that Witherspoon has been a phenomenal way to learn, challenge my beliefs, and last but not least, eat good food.”
“I loved the fact that there was a community of students willing to consider the foundational elements of society and persons, rather than taking for granted ideological assumptions commonly made within current academic or political discourse. Witherspoon challenged us to seek truthfully those grounding assumptions that are ultimately fruitful in both conception and practice. Above all, I appreciated the friendship and intellectual honesty of participants.”
“I found the discussions very interesting and relevant to my life. In my normal academic courses, there was rarely any talk of concepts like meaning, purpose, acedia, ambition, human flourishing, the purpose of education, wonder, and the like. The cultural excursions were a great opportunity to learn more about art and spend time with people who taught me much about how to appreciate art and music. “
“[At the seminars] I was exposed to readings off the beaten path. I was able to think about how ideas and society matter for my life and its direction, not considering them merely in the abstract. I was able to deepen my intellectual community by discussing with those who were similarly interested in the implications of the intellectual project.”