[Smt-talk] Advocating for the humanities

Jonathan Santore jsantore at mail.plymouth.edu
Tue Apr 8 09:09:27 PDT 2014

I really appreciate Christopher Antila's statement about this ongoing discussion: 

"Our discipline faces an array of political challenges, and we continue to ignore them at our peril." 

While I feel that this statement is not precisely true about the discipline itself, I think that it is certainly true regarding the contexts and circumstances in which our discipline is currently practiced, and that attempting to maintain an absolute separation between discussions of "the discipline itself" and its contexts and circumstances is practically impossible, and probably unwise for the health of "the discipline itself." 

As for me, I hope that I can look in the mirror and feel that I live a life of moral and ethical consistency. For example, as a strong believer in public funding for the humanities, the arts, and higher education, I feel that I can accept the past. present, and future benefits of the existence of these programs to myself and those around me with a clear conscience -- even when I have disagreed strongly with individual decisions made in the contexts of such programs. If I did not believe in these programs, I would be troubled by the idea of having accepted any benefit from them in my past, or accepting any benefit from them in my present or future. 


Jonathan Santore 
Plymouth State University (NH) 

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