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Humanities Terminologies Essay

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Updated: Jan 15th, 2022

Humanities

These are disciplines in academics that are used to assess the human condition. This is normally done using methods that involve analysis, critical thinking and speculation. These methods of inquiry are different from the empirical approaches that are usually adopted for the natural sciences. Examples of humanities include history, literature, music, religion and arts. Languages, both the ancient and modern, are also humanities (Fiero, 2011).

Distinguishing the humanities from other modes of human inquiry and expression

Humanities differ from other academic disciplines that study the human condition since they use methods that involve speculation, analysis and critique. Other modes of human inquiry and expression use methods that involve the empirical approach. Such approaches are employed in natural sciences and they need to have testable variables and predictions about various aspects of the universe. Such studies may be explained rationally or logically, differing from the humanities. Empirical approaches, employed by other modes of inquiry, utilize the empirical approach that requires evidence or observable events that need the use of senses.

A current example of each type of the following humanities and an explanation of why each example given reflects current developments in politics, socioeconomics, and technology:

  1. Art – art has evolved with time and has experienced improvements owing to the fact that technology plays a great part in art now. At the beginning of the 21st century, critiques and historians realized the difference in the methods of artistic works. The historians described this as post modern. This expression has been used to describe the different styles of making art. One way this art has been changed is through the copying of masterpieces of the past and using current technology that involves the use of computers. Today’s art does not contain the traditional aspect of the past and their uses differ from those of the past. Today’s art (contemporary art) differ from the traditional art in that the content of the art is of more significance than the material or form utilized in its making. Today’s artists seek to involve the viewers conceptually through the use of innovative ideas and issues (Levi, 1970). Today’s advancements in art include computerized and digitized art. This computerized art is used as a major form of human expression. This can be accredited to the technological advancement to the computer age. The first computers were developed and with time, there were several advancements that saw the development of more sophisticated software. Computers have also allowed the easy manipulation of large amounts of data. Technology has also played a great role in making the art easily available to the people interested in it. People can now access art from the internet in the comforts of their homes. The World Wide Web has enabled people access art galleries to choose the pieces they want. Museums have also been seen trying to incorporate technology in their methods of displaying and advertising their pieces of art. This is done in an attempt to keep up with the advancements and competition from others
  1. Music – music has gone through evolution with time since today’s music incorporates a lot of technological input to make it successful and appealing. This means that those individuals who still use traditional instruments such as the trombone and the flutes face a lot of challenges. Today’s music is highly computerized and involves the use of software and high-end computers to produce digital music. Digitization of the music range from creation of the instrumentals to the recording and manipulation of the human voice. This has created high quality music and faced off the traditional music. However, technology has brought with it some challenges to the artists and the producers of the music. One of the challenges is that of lack of privacy. Through the internet, people can easily download music and replicate it. This causes losses for the musicians and their producers since they only sell less of their CDs since the music is made freely and readily available to the public via the World Wide Web.
  1. Literature – literature has also undergone metamorphosis from the traditional methods that were previously employed in writing to the more sophisticated and modern forms. The materials used for writing have changed due to the technological advancements that have characterized the type of literature today (Levi, 1970). Through the invention and the use of computers and software, literature can now be accessed easily. The World Wide Web has made the literature to be only a click away. However, this has also posed some challenges to the writers and editors. Their materials have been put in the internet and anyone can access them and use them for their own good. Many researchers have had the opportunity to access the publication of other authors and use them for their research. The literature available in the internet is practically from all subjects. It is not always the case, however, since this availability of literature in the internet has enabled research to be much easy, more so for those researchers who are only using secondary sources as their source of data. The researchers are able to access the information with much ease and compare their work with those of other researchers. Today’s literature has also changed and has accommodated some of the aspects that were not formally incorporated in literature. Literature has been used widely to shape the political atmosphere. Politics have also shaped the literature of today since many writings and publications are of political nature and address the political issues of the area.
  1. Philosophy – philosophy has also changed a lot with time and has included such fields as moral philosophy. Moral philosophy has been used to shape the current developments in socioeconomics. It has seen its application in the field of management since every organization is required to observe ethics in the working environment. Every individual is required to adhere to the set codes of ethics in the organization. The branch of ethics that encompasses these ethical issues in the workplace is the normative ethics. This branch of ethics is concerned with the way one ought to act. The person’s decisions are also shaped by the ethical consideration. Many ethical theories have been developed to guide the human behavior. The organization is one area where ethics is richly applicable. Organizations are normally ranked according to the level which they adhere to the code of ethics.
  1. Architecture – architecture has also gone through several changes from the past. In the past, architecture employed more traditional methods and structures were developed in accordance to traditional beliefs. The churches, for example, were built using traditional architectural designs. There were fine details which displayed the rich culture of the society. Today’s architecture has changed and has done away with some of the rich details that the traditional ones had. Today, different architectural styles are being used for different purposes. Architecture has been significantly changed and shaped by the technology. Technological advancements have enabled the construction of more sophisticated structures. Sky scrapers have now been built due to the technological advancements available.

References

  1. Fiero, G. (2011). The Humanities Tradition (6th ed.). New York, NY: McGraw Hill.
  2. Levi, A. (1970). The Humanities Today. Bloomington: Indiana University Press.
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