About the Humanities and Other Controls


I’m taking another humanities course. Its a little bizarre. The humanities and the academic system that’s grown up around it really seems to be a consensus machine. The people involved are systemizing how art and history is interpreted. I’m not sure its really not just propaganda designed to manipulate people’s opinions and values. There’s an overt demand for you to justify your opinion by explaining how it relates to your personal experience. But if your opinion is wrong, regardless of the connection you have with the subject to your personal life, you aren’t interpreting it correctly. This is a manipulative way of forcing people to re-conceptualize their experiences into a fixed set of “valid” values.

They instructors say there’s a valid interpretation, but its only justified by an appeal to authority. Its purely about enforce validation with the final arbiters being the academics. I’m really not sure that their opinions are really any more valid than anyone else’s except in the context of academia. Its essentially a formalized echo chamber of people enforcing the perception of the value of their opinion with each other. There is no hostile pear review, unless your opinion is outside of consensus. Then its completely worthless. There isn’t any way to formally overturn the group-think, as there is (or perceived to be) in science. At least with science there is an unavoidable comparison to reality that can resolve this. But since the post-modern era there isn’t any equivalent of objective skill in the humanities. It hostly seems a popularity contest and conformity to arbitrary authority.

No wonder journalism, literature, and art have gone to shit.

Tags: irl

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