Universities across America are in a state of acute intellectual decay. Replacing a millenia-old tradition of discussion and debate, a stifling liberal consensus now dominates many campuses. Administrators often succumb to student pressure to disinvite unpopular speakers, while those few who do make it to campus are often shouted down or attacked. In response, some right-wing students have resorted to inviting speakers that are needlessly demagogic, making serious discussion even more difficult. Informed and civil debates are sadly rare on college campuses.
Humanities courses should be integral to the university experience of almost any Stanford student. So whether you’re trying to fulfil WAYS requirements or expanding your intellectual horizons, here are five essential humanities classes to take this quarter.
In the 1980s, protestors at Stanford successfully petitioned the university to remove its ‘Western Culture’ requirement on the basis of the reading list’s ‘European-Western and male bias.’ When in 2016 the then-editor of the Stanford Review, Harry Elliot, tried to have the old Western Civilization requirement re-instated, he was met with similar cries of colonialism and racism. The ultimate failure of the Review’s campaign was greeted with great delight by the prevailing left-liberal consensus on campus. This was to some extent understandable; the Review’s campaign seemed to implicitly suggest that Western thought was superior to the canonical works of other regions.
Continue reading “The Left-Wing Case for a Western Civilization Requirement”