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Interdisciplinary Humanities

What Are the Humanities?

"Want Innovative Thinking? Hire from the Humanities"

This was the headline in the March 31, 2011, edition of the Harvard Business Review. Author Tony Golsby-Smith, argued that people trained in the humanities “have learned to play with big concepts, and to apply new ways of thinking to difficult problems that can’t be analyzed in conventional ways.”

The study of the humanities—Art, English, History, Languages and Literatures, Music, Philosophy, Theatre Arts and Performance Studies, and Theology and Religious Studies—helps people to become good at:

Complexity and ambiguity

Humanists are curious, ask open-ended questions, and “see the big picture.”


Humanities students are creative and think “out-of-the-box.”

Communication and presentation

Humanities graduates are well trained in writing and they can develop persuasive arguments. They also have great presentation skills.

For more information, see:

Tony Goldsby-Smith, “Want Innovative Thinking? Hire from the Humanities,” Harvard Business Review, March 31, 2011

Zac Bissonnette, “Your College Major May Not Be As Important As You Think,” The New York Times, November 3, 2010.