Michaela Ferrario

Project Title: American Freedom and Its Relationship to the Common Good

Project Description: The United States has long been heralded as “the land of the free.” But what does that mean? Is freedom a purely political concept, equating merely to the absence of external restraint, or does it likewise depend upon the obtainment of collective social and economic rights? How can we optimally balance the protection of individuals’ personal liberty with a commitment to the common good? Through employing lessons from American history, sociology, political philosophy, and social psychology, my project seeks to unpack these questions and others with particular attention to how and why the rhetoric surrounding American freedom has become increasingly polarized since the mid-20th century and to its larger consequences for the foundations of our shared society.

Most Important Accomplishment: My most important accomplishment is still in the works.

Reflections on the College Scholar Program: Being a part of the College Scholar Program has empowered me to reframe my college experience in terms of an uncharted intellectual journey. I am grateful to have the opportunity to learn from and work alongside a diverse cohort of equally passionate peers who are likewise eager to dissolve disciplinary boundaries and to dive bravely into the unknown.