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Why Study the Classics?

Why study the Classics? Classics offers, at least on a superficial analysis, little in the way of short-term gains or practical real-world benefit. Have you heard about all of our major institutions and nonprofits throwing obscene amounts of money at those who canĀ dicere Latine?

Me neither.

In our current educational climate, the focus rests almost exclusively on job preparedness, with the result that STEM education is the preferred method for our pragmatic moment. This focus often forces advocates of learning Latin and Ancient Greek to proffer utilitarian reasons for the study of antiquity: it trains you to think logically, to read carefully, to pay attention to detail and to solve complex problems!

These are all true, but with something of the whiff of apology about them. And self-justification is almost always unbecoming.