Irony or comedy?

This is a banner on a university campus. What one cannot see in the picture is that the book being read by the girl is Machiavelli’s The Prince.

On a related note, there is a radio ad for a professional college that begins with a young voice announcing that she is taking courses in Slavic languages, literature, and “philosophy of the animal kingdom”. An announcer cuts her off to ask what kind of job she can expect to get after taking these courses. She begins to respond “well, philosopher say-” but is interrupted by the announcer who addresses the listener by saying that “the world doesn’t run on theories” and that this college offers degrees in “practical” things like criminal justice and nursing.

This would not be so disturbing if this were not also precisely the ethos of our so-called liberal arts institutions as well.


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