Wednesday, June 16, 2010
History for Dollars
New York Times columnist David Brooks offers a surprisingly strong argument for studying the humanities in this age of market-driven careerism. It is a hard case to make in the current economic climate. As he notes: "When the going gets tough, the tough take accounting." And none of my students last term seemed interested in defending the humanities, let alone majoring in them (unless we include "Economics" in that area). There are many good reasons to study the humanities, as Brooks argues. But maybe he should mention that the market for the humanities has got to get better -- and with everyone rushing to accounting, good writing and a deep understanding of human nature may just be in short supply when you graduate.