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The Value of Humanities

This series of 6 lectures is intended for graduates and undergraduates interested in the challenge of how we best defend the work of the humanities in today's political and economic climates. The lectures offer a critical taxonomy of the ways in which advocacy for the humanities conventionally proceeds. Don't expect polemic. My aim is to put the arguments through their paces: to work out the strengths and weakness of each kind of justification, and to see what is left standing at the end.
A note on audience: the lectures should be as relevant to American as to British students. Many of the most influential contributors to the debate in recent years have been American. Part of my purpose, in the first two lectures especially, is to try to clarify the differences in the American and British education systems and political contexts and therefore in the kinds of defence available.

# Episode Title Description People Date
1 Creative Commons Introduction First lecture in the Value of Humanities series in which Professor Helen Small discusses the broad political and social context in which to place these lectures. Helen Small 13 May 2013
2 Creative Commons Distinction (the distinctive character and work of the Humanities) Second lecture in the Value of Humanities series in which Professor Helen Small discusses how the humanities is distinct from other academic disciplines. Helen Small 13 May 2013
3 Creative Commons How Useful are the Humanities? First lecture in the Value of Humanities series in which Professor Helen Small discusses the ideas of use and usefulness in the context of the value of the humanities. Helen Small 13 May 2013
4 Creative Commons The Humanities' Contribution to Happiness Fourth lecture in the Value of Humanities series in which Professor Helen Small discusses the Humanities' contribution to happiness. Helen Small 13 May 2013
5 Creative Commons Democracy Needs Us Fifth lecture in the Value of Humanities series in which Professor Helen Small discusses the idea that a flourishing democracy needs the Humanities. Helen Small 13 May 2013
6 Creative Commons Intrinsic Value, or Value for Their Own Sake Sixth and final lecture First lecture in the Value of Humanities series in which Professor Helen Small discusses the philosophical idea of intrinsic value, or the humanities as valuable for its own sake. Helen Small 13 May 2013