This book has some very serious, very fundamental problems Let me first say, in full disclosure, that I am a professor in a Humanities department English , so I note my bias They, however, do not Frank and Gabler are sociologists and do not make note of the potential experimental bias of their research Granted, their data is collected well, but the interpretation of such is whimsical, reductive, and highly problematic.They base their ideas on the argument that the university exists to understand and teach universal truths a hegemonic, Western, and widely opposed construct It s been a long while since Plato s great Truth was valuable to anyone outside of the Anglo heteronormative traditions Still, Frank and Gabler seem to think the Humanities sustain these hierarchies rather than topple them I point to political literary theories Feminism, Critical Race, Post Colonialism, Queer, etc to suggest how the Humanities have in fact evolved to consider parity and multiculturalism when other fields ahem, sciences had no cause to do so.Their interpretation of the Humanities is reductive and misinformed They suggest the only application of Humanities is in law, and somehow clump education, journalism, communication, and advertising under the social sciences Hmm They completely ignore capitalism and personal interest in the modern University, as well as the critical thinking, creativity, analysis, metaphysical considerations, problem solving, abstraction, open mindedness, and communication skills that are vulnerable with a decline of the Humanities.Perhaps Universities do train folks for jobs, advance technology, and attempt to map reality but they also develop the human which is for what the Humanities exist The Humanities are no longer dependent on the canon, the divine, or vertical hierarchies Finally, they are so horrifically redundant in their writing they could use a good English major to help them edit Too bad they won t exist much longer. Current Conversations On The State Of Academia Contain A Broad Sense Of Crisis Over Changes In The Body Of University Knowledge The Decline Of Literature, The Unbridling Of Ethnic Studies, The Growth Of Various Applied Programs, And So On Much Of The Concern Revolves Around A Perceived Deterioration Of The Academic Core In Which, The Thinking Goes, The University S Teaching And Research Priorities Are Increasingly Compromised By External Financial And Political Interests With Data On Faculty And Course Composition Over The Twentieth Century For A Global Sample Of Universities, This Book Provides An Examination Unprecedented In Scope And Scale Of Changes In Academia The Authors Document The Changing Emphases Accorded The Branches Of Learning, The Applied And Basic Divisions, And The Disciplinary Fields They Find Deep Transformations, As Anticipated, But Offer A New Explanation For These Shifts Changes In Academic Focus Are Less The Work Of Outside Interest Groups, But Instead Are Cultural Maps To The Altering Features Of Globally Institutionalized Understandings Of Reality
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- 272 pages
- Reconstructing the University: Worldwide Shifts in Academia in the 20th Century
- David John Frank
- 21 July 2019 David John Frank