Re-reading Interdisciplinarity

As I was re-reading Moran’s Interdisciplinarity, I came across something that I found very interesting; according to how the Greeks organized subjects into a hierarchy, the lowest subjects included “the fine arts, poetics and engineering” (Moran, 3).  I assumed before reading that the fine arts would be on the bottom, but I could not believe that engineering was too!  As mentioned in one of my previous posts, my sister is praised by many for going to school for aeronautical engineering-everyone thinks she is very intelligent for doing so.  Engineering is one of the fields that everyone thinks highly of, so I found it very interesting that engineering was on the bottom of the list, according the Greeks.  I didn’t see this the first time through reading Interdisciplinarity, but I am glad that I picked up on it this time around.


One of the many perks of being an English major is that most of the time, our finals are essays!  Some people may say that that is worse, but I would rather write a thousands essays than take a final exam for a class (not that I necessarily would like to write a thousand essays either).  That being said, I am dreading the two written finals that I have to take for this semester.  It is just so stressful and you just hope and pray that your mind doesn’t go blank on the day of the test.  Although essays are stressful to write, you aren’t put on the spot, and that is why I will always prefer essays over tests.

English Versus Every Other Subject

While reading Chapter 4 of Moran’s Interdisciplinarity (which basically said the same thing over and over again in the thirty pages), I noticed that the text kept bringing up the idea that although History and English had separated from each other as disciplines, historians drew “on ‘soft’ sources such as literary tests, autobiographies…as well as ‘hard’ sources such as official government documents, state papers and statistical data” (Moran, 111).  Why does this matter, you might ask? Well, this proves, to me at least, that no matter how rigidly separated any of the disciplines are, they still draw on aspects of each other to essentially “back-up” the claims being made.  So if English texts are so important to make connections to other disciplines, why does it still get the bad reputation?  I guess I will never know, but the question will continue to puzzle me throughout the semester.

Speaking Up

It happened again.  I was talking to one of my distant family members when they asked me what I was going to Suny Geneseo for, and when I replied that I was majoring in English, I received the same response that we all get: “Why? Do you not want a job in the future?”  In my head I muttered the usual recurring thoughts that travel through my mind when I get this response.  I nervously laughed and said “Yeah that’s why”.   Continue reading “Speaking Up”

Why English?

On a daily basis I get asked the question, “Why did you chose English out of all the possible majors?”, to which I simply have run out of responses for.  I would ultimately give the usual “because it’s my favorite subject” or some other less-than-stellar response.  But, as I was reading Chapter 2 of Interdisciplinarity by Moran, I came across an interesting take on English.   Continue reading “Why English?”

English Keeps Getting a Bad Name

As I was flipping back to find a particular page from Interdisciplinarity, one quote from a different page caught my eye, and honestly, made me mad.  As stated by Graham Hough, “I do not believe that anyone should have their higher education in literature alone.  What is disgustingly called “English” in universities should never have grown into a separate and isolated ‘subject’ as it has.  It needs to be closely integrated with the study of other languages, with history and the history of ideas.” (Moran, 42).

Why did this make me so mad?  Because it was a complete slam to my major!  Hough referred to the major as “disgusting” and it irked me.  Why did English get such a bad rap?  What if going pre-med had this bad of a reputation?  Could we go without doctors in our lives?  No! So why is it okay to give a negative connotation to English?  The world may never know, but I would love to find out why.