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* TUESDAY Firing Line (Public TV stations - check local listings for day and time): Liberal education - or what remains of it in today's professionally oriented colleges - is the topic of a weekly four-part series starting this week with William F. Buckley Jr. is in his usual role as host. "Firing Line" - a civilized haven from sound bites and trendy journalistic phrases - is one of the few places on TV you're likely to find such a subject getting the time and intellectual rigor it requires. The first two shows empan el presidents Elizabeth T. Kennan of Mount Holyoke College in South Hadley, Mass., and John Agresto of St. John's College in Santa Fe, N.M., as well as Princeton University professor Cornel West. They'll be asked "What is a liberal education?" and, the next week, "Who should be liberally educated?" * WEDNESDAY Live From Lincoln Center (PBS, 8-10:30 p.m., E.T.): The Mostly Mozart Festival - an appealing concert series from Lincoln Center's Avery Fisher Hall in New York - begins its 27th season by broadening its franchise a bit with "Mostly Mozart and Mendelssohn Too." Three noted American artists appear with the Festival Orchestra under music director Gerard Schwarz. Soprano June Anderson sings Mozart arias, violinist Joshua Bell is soloist in the Mozart Violin Concerto No. 3 in G, and Andre Watts is the pianist in the Mendelssohn Piano Concerto No. 1 in G Minor. Purely orchestral works are offered too, and the suave host, Hugh Downs, will interview the artists during the intermission.

Caught in the Act (NBC, 9-10 p.m.): Tiny high-tech surveillance cameras can be hidden almost anywhere these days. To many employee groups that's bad - it has led to recently publicized employer abuses. To law enforcement agencies - as demonstrated in this special - it's good. It means they can expose gun runners, insurance frauds, or corruption among state legislators. Hosted by Dean Stockwell, this special - another program spawned by the reality-TV craze - screens footage that shows people in the act o f breaking the law.

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Please check local listings for all these programs, especially "Firing Line."

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