Why do we need the humanities?

From Humanities, a special issue on the challenges of the humanities, past, present, and future. Do humans still need to study the humanities? Former university presidents Kevin Reilly, Charles Steger, James Barker, and J. Bernard Machen respond. Why do we need the humanities? Rod Dreher wonders. Terry Eagleton on the slow death of the university: “If the humanities in Britain are withering on the branch, it is largely because they are being driven by capitalist forces while being simultaneously starved of resources”. Raymond Williams tried to save culture from a priestly elite — can the same be said of the digital humanities? Moira Weigel reviews Keywords: A Vocabulary of Culture and Society by Raymond Williams and Distant Reading by Franco Moretti. Matthew Rose on the liberal arts and the virtues: A Thomistic history. Rebekah Spearman on faith and the fate of the liberal arts. Glenn Altschuler on how to save the liberal arts from extinction. Neoliberalizing liberal education: Jim Sleeper on Fareed Zakaria’s In Defense of a Liberal Education (and more). Michael Berube and Jennifer Ruth on how the crisis in American academe has nothing to do with the intellectual content of research and teaching in the humanities, and everything to do with the labor conditions of most American college professors. Erik Loomis on why Republicans hate the humanities (and reading more generally). People in Black: Gilbert T. Sewall on aging hipsters and the humanities brain drain. Stephen Burt on all possible humanities dissertations considered as single tweets.