New branch for humanities

December 4, 2014

Like Sarah Churchwell (“Humanities: why the study of human culture still matters”, Opinion, 13 November), I am not immune to the appeal of a good read from within the literature’s considerable variety. She may concur that we won’t exhaust this variety soon; for instance, the settings, roles, action and jargon in The Hound of the Baskervilles don’t reappear in places passed through by retired Major Jack Reacher. Such diversity seems a weighty problem for a practical slant on the discipline.

If the humanities are to improve communication and help to “reframe our complicated world”, they cannot rely solely on language used within the literature, or even on precise interpretations of such language: the next problematic social setting encountered is likely to be very different from the last. Instead, Churchwell’s discipline needs a formal means to construct precise language in real time – practical jargon assembled on the spot by people aiming to reframe their world via serious debate.

Neil Richardson
Kirkheaton

Times Higher Education free 30-day trial

You've reached your article limit.

Register to continue

Registration is free and only takes a moment. Once registered you can read a total of 3 articles each month, plus:

  • Sign up for the editor's highlights
  • Receive World University Rankings news first
  • Get job alerts, shortlist jobs and save job searches
  • Participate in reader discussions and post comments
Register

Have your say

Log in or register to post comments

Featured Jobs

Assistant Recruitment - Human Resources Office

University Of Nottingham Ningbo China

Outreach Officer

Gsm London

Professorship in Geomatics

Norwegian University Of Science & Technology -ntnu

Professor of European History

Newcastle University

Head of Department

University Of Chichester
See all jobs

Most Commented

men in office with feet on desk. Vintage

Three-quarters of respondents are dissatisfied with the people running their institutions

students use laptops

Researchers say students who use computers score half a grade lower than those who write notes

Canal houses, Amsterdam, Netherlands

All three of England’s for-profit universities owned in Netherlands

sitting by statue

Institutions told they have a ‘culture of excluding postgraduates’ in wake of damning study

A face made of numbers looks over a university campus

From personalising tuition to performance management, the use of data is increasingly driving how institutions operate