Friday, January 31, 2014

As a UCLA Classical Civilization major, President Obama's vapid Art History comments reek of anti-intellectualism

My comments on the Washington Post:

As a forty eight year old Senior in Classical Civilization at UCLA, this President's vapid comments about Art History reek of his and Arne Duncan's longstanding anti-intellectualism. Someone needs to explain to these reactionaries that there is more to life than stuffing money in your pockets. The idea that education has value beyond economic concerns is sadly lost on these political opportunists and lackeys to finance capital.

Updated: February 6, 2014 A related tumblr post

Wonder what snarky, anti-intellectual jokes President Obama would make about this bulletin board in Dodd Hall? My department’s bulletin board — Classics — is right next to the Art History one. I’m sure that would arouse antipathy from finance capital’s favorite president as well. Obama’s disparaging remarks about the humanities and academia are another reason why I don’t regret voting for Cynthia McKinney in 2008 and Dr. Jill Stein in 2012.

Updated: February 15, 2014, Alexandra Miletta: What I Learned by Studying Art History via @DianeRavitch. My commentary there.

Thank you. I was dismayed by the President's comments, and would have written an essay in response except that I'm in my final quarter at UCLA and have precious little time to respond to his banal anti-intellectualism. As a Classical Civilization major, I have a deep affinity to art history. I should also mention roughly a third of my upper division courses were art history courses of the ancient world. For the past two decades I've worked at a STEM company, and I've always been taken aback by both how narrow and shallow the education of the types of majors the POTUS was hawking.


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