Rick Scott, governor of Florida, stated recently that tax dollars should not be used to fund liberal arts programs – specifically anthropology.  He feels that tax money should only be used to fund programs where jobs are plentiful, asking “is it a vital interest of the state to have more anthropologists?”  This from a father whose daughter studied anthropology – you can’t help but to think he’s talking directly to her in a passive aggressive rant.

I agree with Mr. Scott on the point that there are not many jobs in anthropology at the moment.  I graduated in 2009 with a (largely useless) anthropology degree and I’ve had my issues with finding a job.  However, I don’t feel that getting rid of liberal arts programs and schools is the answer.  I agree with Paul Stoller who aptly describes this in his article “The Limited Good of Rick Scott’s Anthropology”:

“If we eliminate the liberal arts and humanities from public university curricula, we will produce a generation of uncritical technocrats who will have lost their sense of wonder, their feeling of intellectual passion and their capacity to dream about life beyond the boundaries of the limited good.  In such a passionless and unimaginative space, we will lose our capacity to think, grow and reconfigure a rapidly changing world.”

Please read Mr. Stoller’s full article here.  And thanks to my sister for sending it my way!

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