zaterdag 29 november 2014

Debug the Myth: Humanities Provide Great Return and Stable Careers

Common wisdom has it that a humanities degree leads to no career whatsoever  or even to unemployment. However, a series of recent studies convincingly debug this myth:

Read this Forbes article how humanities provide great return on investment.

"Humanities majors have taken their lumps on many fronts recently. Their defenders often respond with appeals to the ways in which the humanities add to the richness of life in nonmonetary ways. That is certainly true, but the humanities have been selling themselves short. In addition to adding invaluably to our culture, humanities majors are a wise financial investment as well. [...]"

Universities and governments thus have to be extremely cautious when they impose budget cuts on humanities programs, as is currently being proposed at the University of Amsterdam (what a shame!).

donderdag 27 november 2014

Conference Report on the Making of the Humanities IV in Rome

Here's a report on the Making of the Humanities IV conference last month in Rome by one of the participants, Léjon Saarloos (thanks, Léjon!):

"For the visitors to the fourth conference on the making of the humanities, it was not just the Italian sun and the hospitality of the KNIR that offered pleasant moments. With about seventy papers read on the history of the humanities, the Making of the Humanities IV presented a broad and inspiring overview of the field. The three keynote lectures by Helen Small, Fenrong Liu and Hans-Jörg Rheinberger represented various trends within the conference, to which I shall return later.

Apart from the many papers, there was also time for celebration. The organising committee of the conference announced the founding of a society for the history of the humanities and a journal for the history of the humanities, published by Chicago University Press. This new journal finally provides a platform for the already burgeoning community of scholars working on topics in the humanities. I hope the new society and the new journal will succeed in connecting scholars from different disciplines as well as this fourth conference did. [...]"

Click here for the full report.

zaterdag 1 november 2014

The Power of the Humanities

In a recent article in Folia, my colleague Jan Don argues that humanists can promote the humanities much better than they have done so far. The cliché that the humanities don't contribute to economic growth is of the mark. In urbanized environments, like Dutch cities, the economic contribution of humanists is even larger than that of scientists.

Click here for the publication that analyzes the economic contribution of humanists in the Dutch city of Leiden.

Click here for further statistics on the power of the humanities from an international perspective!