13 março 2006

When a Good Book Was Hard to Find

The only thing most teachers and students of the humanities agree on, it often seems, is that these are troubled times for their field. For a whole variety of reasons—social, intellectual, and technological—the humanities have been losing their confident position at the core of the university’s mission. This represents an important turning-point, not just for education, but for our culture as a whole. Ever since the Renaissance, the humanities have defined what it means to be an educated person. The very word comes from the Latin name of the first modern, secular curriculum, the studia humanitatis, invented in fourteenth-century Italy as a rival to traditional university subjects like theology, medicine, and law.

Harvard Magazine

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