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The Humanities and the University - I

Inspired by neo-humanism, the research university was to facilitate self-cultivation, aesthetic appreciation (especially through a knowledge of classical antiquity), and a wider intellectual horizon (through studying history and foreign cultures). Yet, contrary to these lofty ideals, its most enduring legacy has been entrenched class interests, social segregation, Germanism, nationalism, and narrow specialization. In this two-part course, we shall read a selection of founding documents (Humboldt, Paulsen, etc.) with an eye to these problems. We shall also read several critics (Nietzsche, Arendt, Arrowsmith).

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Course Code: HAM 7401

Credit Hours: 3

Course Level: 700

Inspired by neo-humanism, the research university was to facilitate self-cultivation, aesthetic appreciation (especially through a knowledge of classical antiquity), and a wider intellectual horizon (through studying history and foreign cultures). Yet, contrary to these lofty ideals, its most enduring legacy has been entrenched class interests, social segregation, Germanism, nationalism, and narrow specialization. In this two-part course, we shall read a selection of founding documents (Humboldt, Paulsen, etc.) with an eye to these problems. We shall also read several critics (Nietzsche, Arendt, Arrowsmith).

Registration for this course is not open yet

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Description

In this course, students will make the university itself—as a historical creation, a social body, and an institution—into an object of analysis. They will reflect on problems with the university, its relation to the wider public, and the dangers that concentration and specialization pose for learning. They will also gain critical insight into the university as an instrument of social segregation and control. Student projects can include: examining education access and outcomes for black vs. white students, graduate placement, and contemporary debates over affirmative action and discriminatory admission policies (e.g., at Harvard and other Ivy Leagues)

Area of Study: History and Methods

Required/ Elective: Elective

Prerequisites: Admission into a Program of Study

Instructor: Dr. Joydeep Bagchee

 

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