The Humanities:  Focus and Purpose  
The Humanities are those disciplines that study the expressions of human beings as a means of exploring and revealing what it means to be human. They include literature, philosophy, history, the visual arts, music, theater, opera, dance, cinema, and architecture.  Rather than examining physical attributes, the Humanities probe such intangibles as purpose, meaning, and judgment, and, as a consequence, they challenge people to self-reflect, think abstractly, and create.  In short, the Humanities attempt to understand the human condition, its mysteries, and its paradoxes.

HUM 1020 is a course that explores how human beings create in order to express their ideas and feelings about the world they live in.  Furthermore, the course will investigate why so many human beings feel this urge to create. As such, this course will focus primarily on the creative process and how it is shaped by the creator’s consciousness of the natural, social, and spiritual environment; awareness of cultural heritage and its development; responsiveness to personal events and issues; and knowledge of and technical control over the chosen artistic medium.  For the sake of being efficient, this course will survey that period of cultural history which is referred to as Modernism (1900-1930) because its artists believed that they had to rebel against established cultural traditions since they no longer reflected the reality of modern life.  



So, you will ask yourself, what does all of this have to do with me?  After all, I am not an artist.  In the broadest sense, the Humanities will facilitate your understanding of what it means to be a human being, whether on an emotional, intellectual, and spiritual level.  Furthermore, the Humanities will assist in the development of intellectual skills needed to navigate through every facet of life.   With this in mind, HUM 1020 is a journey which will support you in 

·                    Exploring  the human story, its heritage, and its traditions

·                    Discovering how human experience  is expressed and interpreted

·                    Considering ideas about the meaning of life and the reasons for our thoughts and actions

·                    Surveying social, political, and cultural development

·                    Using history, philosophy, and the other disciplines of the humanities as the means to arrive at new insights

·                    Understanding how history, tradition, and ideas shape our lives and build community

·                    Developing analytical and critical thinking skills as well as the ability to conceptualize and synthesize ideas

·                    Learning how to communicate and exchange ideas

·                    Comprehending and analyzing the creative processo

Thus, in the end, this course will set you on your path to self-discovery and provide some of the skills needed to make your way through life.