This series of interlinked essays takes the form of historical 'voyages' around the Victorian intellectual John Henry Newman, and Newman's classic work The Idea of a University, as well as changes in the structure and culture of universities which occurred in Newman's lifetime. The voyages connect nineteenth- and twentieth-century university history, mainly in Britain and the United States but with side excursions to continental Europe. Among the many important topics discussed are the history of student communities in Oxford and Cambridge, the growth of a modern examinations culture, university architecture and the use of space in connection with educational ideals, urbanism and universities, and the competition of states, markets and academic guilds for the control of universities and the right to define the missions of university professors.
1. The idea of the idea of a university and its antithesis; 2. 'Consult the Genius of the Place'; 3. 'The first undergraduates, recognizable as such'; 4. Failure; 5. Historical and comparative remarks on the 'federal principle' in higher education; Interlude: General introduction to chapters six and seven; 6. Supply and demand in the writing of university history since about 1790: 1. 'The awkward interval'; 7. Supply and demand in the writing of university history since about 1790: 2. The market and the University of London; 8. Alternatives: 1. The importance of being unattached; 9. Alternatives: 2. Born to have no rest; Index.