17 September 2015
Requiem for my old field
There was a time when it was believed that the study of great literature was necessary to the making of a whole man; that it imparted reason and logic, and aided in the ability to speak well, and to frame one's thoughts; and most importantly, it gave wisdom to those willing to seek it. That was before my time, but in my time there were still faint echoes of better days. Now, the shelves of the English section of the bookstore are choked with ephemera, last year's bestsellers. We have had courses that taught Twilight and Fifty Shades of Grey. We have courses filled with children's books, and now we have shelf after shelf devoted to courses teaching comic books. The students seek neither knowledge- for there is nothing to be found in these books that they do not already know-, nor insight, nor eloquence, nor wisdom, but ease and a fast degree. And for that, they also demand that we pay for their worthless education. My old university has become a place where personal responsibility, reason, intelligence and insight go to cough up blood.