Allan Bloom is the deceased author of Closing of the American Mind.
Life and Works
Bloom was born September 14, 1930, as an only child in Indianapolis, though he later moved to Chicago. He received a B.A. from the University of Chicago and studied in Paris, receiving a PhD in 1955. He taught at Yale and then Cornell, where he translated Plato's Republic, but was unhappy with Cornell's treatment of revolting students and went to Israel, Paris, and Toronto before returning to Chicago, where he translated Rousseau's Emile. It was there that he wrote The Closing of the American Mind: How Higher Education Has Failed Democracy and Impoverished the Souls of Today’s Students (1987), in which he criticizes universities for not teaching students to think, and blames curricula, rock music, television, and elitism. He supported "great book" education, in which the works of past philosophers were taught, and was praised for his conservative philosophy, while liberal critics declared him to be an elitist ignoring change in favor of a modern world. He also worked to translate the works of many thinkers whose importance had been realized by Leo Strauss, including Xenophon, Al-Farabi, and Averroes.
He died on October 7, 1992.
- "Bloom, Allan." New World Encyclopedia.
- "Bloom, Allan." Encyclopedia Britannica Online.