Bob Eagleston's hype that literary studies is a "unique and important way of understanding contemporary problems" would be more persuasive were it not a field so permeated by philosophical and sociological illiteracy.
"Lit critters" do not need selling. They are either marooned in a naively empiricist reading of texts or have sold out to obscurantist theory.
In its present state, "English", like art, is far from the critical hermeneutics and visual science of enlightened inquiry and creativity. I would recommend it to students who want their subjectivist and relativistic illusions reinforced, not challenged.
Kensington and Chelsea College of Art