Knowledge in Crisis:
Liberal Learning in a "Post-Truth" Age

March 22-24, 2018



Conversation Schedule

Call for Proposals


Plenary Speakers

William Deresiewicz

Lynn Hunt

Martín Carcasson

Elizabeth Stoker Bruenig

Participant Resources

Travel and Accommodations

Driving Directions to Campus

Shuttle Information


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**IMPORTANT UPDATE: Due to weather, all Thursday events have been moved to the First Presbyterian Church of Santa Barbara (21 E. Constance Avenue, Santa Barbara). If you are riding the conference shuttle, pickup times will remain the same, but locations will be in the main lobbies of the Fess Parker Doubletree (633 E. Cabrillo Blvd., Santa Barbara) or the Hyatt Centric (1111 E. Cabrillo Blvd., Santa Barbara).**




How can liberal education help us navigate the changing landscape of knowledge?

We live in a moment when disputes about knowledge and truth--always at home in the academy--have broken out dramatically into our wider society. Shared sources of information and standards for credibility seem to have evaporated. Once-esteemed academic institutions, scientific enterprises, and media organizations are routinely dismissed as politicized engines of propaganda. Trust in the expertise, the professionalism, and the simple good faith of those with differing views seems increasingly rare.


How did we get here, and what is our way forward? Can the fragmentation of our society into closed and competing information camps be repaired? Can trust in shared sources of information be restored? What pedagogical practices or curricular strategies nurture a critical spirit without engendering mistrust and insularity? And what contribution should the liberal arts enterprise make in this moment?

Join us to explore these questions and more at the Gaede Institute’s seventeenth annual Cnversation on the Liberal Arts, "Knowledge in Crisis: Liberal Learning in a 'Post-Truth' Age." And contribute to the conversation with your own scholarship by responding to our Call for Proposals. We look forward to seeing you at Westmont College in Santa Barbara next March.

Download the 2018 Call for Proposals


Who should attend?

  • Scholars from any discipline whose work explores knowledge, truth, facts, information, argument and related concepts--their creation, their critique, their dissemination, their use and abuse--and artists exploring these issues in their creative work.
  • Academic administrators and faculty exploring curricular and pedagogical strategies for fostering healthy critical--and self-critical--skills;
  • Scientists, journalists, and others engaged in public discourse about sometimes polarizing topics;
  • Undergraduate or graduate students who are emerging scholars of these issues or practitioners in these areas;
  • Anyone with an interest in the value and practice of liberal education.


Please use the links above to register, find out more about the unique format of the Conversation on the Liberal Arts, or submit a paper proposal. The deadline to submit a paper is November 29, 2017, and the deadline to register is March 13, 2018.