Home Today's Paper Most Popular Video Gallery Photo Gallery
Subscription Blog Signin Register
Logo
Saturday, January 19, 2019 05:09:51 AM
Follow Us On: Facebook Twitter Twitter Twitter Twitter

Humanities are more important than ever

photo by

By
08th-Jul-2018       
Comments
Share your thought
Post a comment »
Read all () »

Alyssa Walker :
From philosophy, history and literature to music, art, sociology, psychology, and anthropology, the humanities are as they sound: the study of what makes us human.
Often pitted against the sciences, the humanities and sciences go hand-in-hand in understanding the world around us.
If the humanities are so crucial, why are they so undervalued?  Because it's hard to put a value on how we process the human experience-it's hard to determine your career trajectory with a humanities degree.  The humanities are difficult to quantify, which is precisely why they're more important than ever.
What is it about the humanities that make them so interesting?  Their slowness-a perfect 180-degree turn-around from our daily, point and swipe lives.
Let's take a closer look at four reasons why the humanities are critically important to us now.
1. Not everything can be reduced to a data point.
Data points can be useful, but not only are they not always necessary, they're not always possible.
In an article in The Atlantic, cultural critic Leon Wieseltier said, "What we need to do is recognize the limitations of that mentality."  He added, "The purpose of the humanities is not primarily utilitarian, it is not primarily to get a job… The purpose of the humanities is to cultivate the individual, cultivate the citizen."
He argued that our present culture prioritizes speed and definitive answers over thinking and asking complex questions.  Consider history-while you could make the argument that dates are data points, we don't study history for the dates-we study history to think about the context of choices made in the past, and the consequences of those choices for the future.
Hard to put a data point on that.
It's' also critical that we think about it.
2. The opposite of humanities is ignorance.
If you think about the humanities as the study of what makes us human, that includes not only our history, but our values and how we choose to live. Ignoring these choices and these stories sets us-all of us-up for failure.  It makes room for misguided opinions, drives wedges into reason. and encourages chaos.
How are we to understand how to make choices moving forward if we choose to ignore the choices of the past and present?
3. New technologies depend on the humanities to survive.
Consider User Experience, or UX-how easily you interface with technology to have an easy, friendly, productive experience with every interaction you have with technology.
How does Facebook make you feel good?  How does online shopping make you feel-how does your UX with your online shopping cart make you want to buy more?
Put simply, how does technology appeal to people?  It appeals to people by having tech designers understand humans-and to understand humans requires, you guessed it, a deep knowledge of the humanities.
How we like to look at art.  How we like to envision ourselves.  How we like to envision others.
Think about Steve Jobs-his focus was on the integration of the humanities with technology to make better products.  The end results?  You use some form of them every day.  His most useful university course?  Calligraphy.  Why?  He liked the way he could invoke a feeling with the appearance of a word.  See all those cool fonts on your smartphone?  That's why they're there.
4. Allows you to interpret the world in different ways.
The humanities give you permission to see the world through a different lens, while still understanding facts.  They give you perspective.
The world is not black and white-it's big, nuanced, complicated, and filled with every shade in between.
Your education in the humanities gives you the power to understand another perspective, even if you don't agree with it.  It encourages you to use reason, not emotion, to arrive at conclusions.
It allows you to empathize with someone, even though you disagree-and forces you to challenge your own beliefs. Provided you consistently apply logic and reason to your decision, you may change your mind, convince someone else, or keep your own opinions.  Why is this important?  It's how we get along-or don't. To study the humanities opens a door.  Give yourself the time and space to think, draw your own conclusions, and learn from the past.  Why?  Because we all have to move forward-it helps to have folks who are thinking along the way.
Learn more about studying the humanities.  
(Alyssa Walker is a freelance writer, educator, and nonprofit consultant. She lives in the White Mountains of New Hampshire with her family).

Tariff
Add Rate

News Archive

Inside The New Nation

City »

Information Minister Dr. Hasan Mahmud speaking at the extended meeting of Awami League at the party office in the city's Bangabandhu Avenue on Friday.


.

International »

Modi's pre-election handouts to cost India billions, breach fiscal targets


Reuters, New Delhi :A series of vote-catching measures planned by Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi as he braces for a difficult general election may cost more than 1 trillion rupees ($14 billion), two sources with direct knowledge of the matter said.Much of the cost of the extra spending or revenue ...

Cricket »

Dhoni, Jadhav power India to ODI series victory


Agency :MS Dhoni and Kedhar Jadhav scored half-centuries as India won the third and final ODI against Australia by seven wickets at Melbourne on Friday to seal the series 2-1.Chasing 231 to win, Dhoni (87*) and Jadhav (61*) put together a 121-run partnership to take India home after the bowlers, ...

Entertainment »

Achol returns acting slowly


Sheikh Arif Bulbon :Popular film actress of present time Achol has returned to acting but with the appearance of anger. Her elder sister Moonmoon is attached with the underworld. When she knows the matter she becomes anger. Achol will be seen by this way in Mizanur Rahman Mizan’s movie Ragi. ...

Entertainment »

Zahid, Mim, Ferdous after a decade


Sheikh Arif Bulbon :Zahid Hasan, Ferdous and Bidya Sinha Saha Mim worked together in late writer, novelist and filmmaker Humayun Ahmed directed in a movie titled Aamar Achhey Jol 10 years ago. Though Zahid Hasan and Ferdous worked under Humayun Ahmed directed movies and dramas but Mim for the first ...

Editorial »

Corrupt practice should be stopped in Chattogram Port


THE fraud syndicates in connivance with some dishonest clearing and forwarding (C&F) agents in the last two years released 4,000 consignments from Chattogram Port using forged documents and other illegal ways. News media reported that these gangs stole and misused the identities of two former Customs Officials of the Chattogram ...

Cricket »

Warner to return to Australia from BPL with elbow injury


After Steven Smith, David Warner, too, will make an early exit from the Bangladesh Premier League(BPL). The 32-year-old will return to Australia for medical assessment after having reporting pain in his elbow, Cricket Australia confirmed."David has reported some pain in his right elbow. He will return to Australia on January ...

Sports »

Pliskova fires up to reach Aussie Open third round


AFP, Melbourne :Seventh seed Karolina Pliskova recovered from a slow start to storm home against unseeded American Madison Brengle and grab a spot in the Australian Open third round Thursday.The 26-year-old Czech went down a set before unleashing a devastating flurry of aces and winners in her 4-6, 6-1, 6-0 ...

International »

Vietnam prepares for Kim Jong Un visit amid talks of second summit with Trump


Reuters, Hanoi  :Hanoi is preparing to receive North Korean leader Kim Jong Un for a state visit, two sources told Reuters, while officials and diplomats said Vietnam is keen to host a second summit between Kim and U.S. President Donald Trump.A source familiar with the matter said Kim will travel ...

Editorial »

Ensure ideal working atmosphere for women


THE bike of Shahanaj Akhter, who became a social media sensation recently for her struggle to maintain her family by offering ridesharing services, was recovered from Raghunathpur area in Narayanganj on early Wednesday hours after it was reportedly stolen. Police arrested a Masters student in English Department of Tejgaon College ...

Football »

Struggling Fulham sign Babel from Besiktas


Fulham signed former Liverpool forward Ryan Babel from Besiktas on Tuesday as the Premier League strugglers bid to bolster their spluttering attack and avoid relegation.Netherlands international Babel has joined Claudio Ranieri's side, who sit 19th and five points from safety, until the end of the season and could make his ...

Football »

Awami League President and Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina receiving a football ( as a souvenir) from Senior Vice-President of Bangladesh Football Federation (BFF) Abdus Salam Murshedy, MP, when a delegation of BFF led by its President Kazi Md Salahuddin met her at the Gono Bhaban on Tuesday night.


International »

Brexit deadline could be pushed back on UK request: French minister


AFP, Paris :The European Union could push back the looming March 29 Brexit deadline if London made such a request, France's Europe Minister Nathalie Loiseau said on Wednesday."At the time of speaking, it's just a theory because Mrs May has never asked for it and neither has anyone in her ...

International »

Australian towns among hottest spots on Earth as heatwave sizzles


Australian towns were among the hottest places on Earth this week as a severe heatwave hit the continent's southeast, with forecasters warning of more record-breaking temperatures before the weekend.The past four days were among the country's top 10 warmest on record, with temperatures nearing 50 degrees Celsius (122 degrees Fahrenheit) ...

Entertainment »

Katrina Kaif disagrees with the term ‘item song’


Katrina Kaif has come a long way in the 16 years she has been a Hindi film actor - from being known mainly for her dancing ability, to her acting talent being proved by films such as New York, Rajneeti and Zero. On how this journey has been so far, ...

 
Items that you save may be read at any time on your computer, iPad, iPhone or Android devices.
 
Are you new to our website? Do you have already an account at our website?
Create An Account Log in here
Email this news to a friend or like someone
Email:
Write a comment to this news