Gerry Canavan

the smartest kid on earth

Monday Night Various

with one comment

* Rethinking the humanities Ph.D. in the wake of the permanent job crisis.

We are beginning to acknowledge that the graduate training we offer in the humanities is simply not fair to our students, the vast majority of whom will never get tenure-track jobs in their disciplines. But the worth of humanities graduate education need not depend on the number of tenure-track humanists it produces. Graduate education in the humanities is an excellent preparation for many, many careers. But our students should not have to find those careers on their own, and they should not have to think of those careers as “non-academic” careers—the jobs we take when we can’t get the jobs we’ve been trained for. Humanities education needs to take itself seriously. We believe that undergraduate humanities programs produce thoughtful, informed, global citizens. Now we need to decide what we really want graduate humanities programs to produce.

* Finally, an end to DADT.

* Protests against Chris Christie in my beloved Garden State.

* BP, terrible in every way.

* Huffington Post piece on the student protests in Puerto Rico.

* And Google Pac-Man might’ve cost us $120,483,800. It was worth it.

One Response

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  1. re: humanities: funny how she takes the same arguments that used to be used to justify getting an undergraduate degree in the humanities (critical thinking ‘skills’) and to criticize it (no job training) and just repeats them for the graduate degree. if graduate education is so valuable, essential to democracy, and preparatory to all these different careers, why does it need to be so completely revamped? for any of the jobs she lists it seems like skills appropriate to that job come first, with ‘critical thinking’ playing its usual contradictory role as a) something special/extra and b) something everyone needs to have. what part of our education gives us these special powers if not the very things that need to be replaced with practical skills?


    May 25, 2010 at 9:41 am

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