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The Intellectual Journey


Text of Bonaventure, Itinerarium
transl. by Oleg Bychkov

Electronic versions of the syllabus and other documents:

Schedule Fall 2011 Honors

Schedule Fall 2011


 In the opening paragraphs of the Itinerarium, St. Bonaventure presents a vision of peace and contemplation that is the goal of the fully integrated life, a life ordered by both coherent educational goals and authentic personal integrity. The university life of learning and theoretical speculation, of scientific research and reflection on human experience, of contemplation and illumination, constitutes the intellectual journey, a path that leads to both enlightenment and personal development. The intellectual life refreshes the spirit and ennobles all of our activities, both professional and personal. At the very heart of Bonaventure’s vision is his conviction that we must begin the journey with a joyous, positive spirit, “anointed with the oil of gladness.” The most important message of the prologue is that, in order to learn properly, one should have an urge and desire for learning and wisdom.

 Bonaventure's vision

Useful link (Reading guides, info on authors)

Itinerarium,  Prologue: “The Soul’s Journey Into God,” 1-4. 

Personal Quest for Knowledge

Text of Prologue, transl. by O. Bychkov

Wright, Richard. Black Boy: A Record of Childhood and Youth. NY: Harper & Row, 1945. (Ch. 13: “The Library Card,” pp. 214-22).

Rodriguez, Richard. The Hunger of Memory: The Education of Richard Rodriguez, An Autobiography  (Ch. 2, pp. 19-28). 

Value of Knowledge as Such (Liberal Education)

Cicero, Pro Archia poeta (In Defense of Archias. Cicero: Selected Speeches, trans.  Michael Grant. NY: Penguin, 1977.)

Newman, J. H. The Idea of a University. Garden City, NY: Image Books, 1962. (“Discourse VII: Knowledge Viewed in Relation to Professional Skill,” pp. 170-92).