Up@dawn 2.0

Wednesday, July 31, 2013

Majoring in being human

Everyone should major, or at least minor, in "being a human being." But you can do that in philosophy too.
"Soon college students all over America will be trundling to their advisers' offices to choose a major. In this moment of financial insecurity, students are naturally drawn to economics, business, and the hard sciences. But students ought to resist the temptation of those purportedly money-ensuring options and even of history and philosophy, marvelous though they may be. All students—and I mean all—ought to think seriously about majoring in English. Becoming an English major means pursuing the most important subject of all—being a human being..."
'The Ideal English Major - The Chronicle Review - The Chronicle of Higher Education


  1. Dr. Oliver, It has been a long time! Thank you for sharing this post. I have to say that I consider my "English" classes in college to be the most fundamental. They teach you not just about flowery writing or the English language, but through them we learn how to communicate. Effective communication is essential for success in your personal life and for society as a whole. You may have the best ideas ever, but if you can't communicate them they will never reach their potential!

  2. Hey, Andrew. I totally agree, studying our native language and its literature is invaluable in building both communication skills and insight into the varieties of ways there are to be human. I have little patience for philosophy colleagues who look down their noses at other humanities disciplines, especially English, as somehow "softer" than philosophy. And yet, I'm convinced that at its best Philosophy rivals English as essential humanities education.

    Are you still video-logging? I'd love to see the next installment!

    1. I haven't been vlogging much these days, but I have gotten into making other types of presentations on prezi.com/user/harrisandrew4/

      However, I have been revisiting the idea of starting a blog. Too many ideas to keep all to myself!