… Finally, the humanities, like the arts and social sciences, offer us the opportunity to think otherwise. In an age in which the financialization of everyday life appears to demand an economic value is attached to everything we need to be reminded that this was not always the case. The humanities speak to different systems of value, different orders of pleasure and enjoyment, that we can all enjoy – of imagination, beauty, laughter and wonder. It is these qualities afterall that make us fully human, that enable us to appreciate what is unique about our own culture as well as what it is we hold in common with the rest of humanity. A good deal is at stake. We must defend the vision of a publicly funded university able to support classes in subjects that do not generate economic benefits. Economic utility is not the measure of who we are or who we want to become.
L’intégralité de l’excellent article de l’historien James Vernon (University of California, Berkeley)