Shimer is not the primary focus of the piece, but it nonetheless provides a snapshot of the contemporary Shimer experience.
On Shimer in general:
“Everyone should go there, because it’s great and wonderful,” Litaker says, before reciting a Shimer rhyme. “'Sex, drugs and Socrates. We kick ass at GREs.’ It’s totally grad school prep. That’s all it is.”
On why you can't fake your way through a Shimer education:
“It’s better to admit that you didn’t read before discussion starts and then just not talk, then to try to act like you did your reading,” Litaker says. “Because you’ll sit there and you’ll be like, ‘Well, I think Alexis de Tocqueville really thinks that democracy is amazing.’ And it’s like, ‘I think if you’d actually read the homework then you would see on page 35 that actually what he says is that this is bulls----.’”
Listen to the whole thing. Kudos to WBEZ's Sam Hudzik for a great interview.
(Previous WBEZ coverage of Shimer and Shimerians includes this Worldview interview with Steven Werlin, and this story about the 2006 move to Chicago.)