Intro to Humanties

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Over the course of the last 40 years, American education has changed.

Whether we are discussing K-12 or high education, emphasis used to be placed upon:

– ethics

– critical thinking

– literacy

– being a good citizen and informed voter

– understanding of American culture and world cultures

– cultivating the complete person.

This is no longer the case.

In modern America, education is primarily designed to provide narrowly defined job training.

Courses like Intro to the Humanities survive from the previous form of education in the modern system, and are clear outliers. This is why opinion is surprisingly – almost artificially – uniform in opposition to its existence.

Teachers still attached to the notion of educating the complete person – not merely the future employee – see courses such as this as essential to maintaining a society of thinking people capable of self-awareness and empathy. They see the rise in cyberbullying, ideological radicalization, rage, fear, and chronic depression as symptomatic of a society that does not value the humanities – or even know what the humanities are.

In a few years, this course may not exist.

If this course goes, what is lost?

What did you learn this term?

Draw upon specific moments from the course (touching upon work we did throughout) to inform your answer.

You may write using the pronoun “I” and offer subjective opinions that still cite specific cultural artifacts from the class, or you might discuss “students” broadly and leave yourself out of the equation if you are not comfortable using “I.”

Write in 12-point, Times New Roman font, double-spaced, with 1 inch margins. Essays less than a page long will be considered too short to adequately answer this question. 3-4 pages seems in the right range.

Please submit as a .doc, .docx, or PDF, but not in Pages or phone photos.

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