Acquiring one of the most essential skills – learning how to question -- is at the heart of the study of the humanities at Franklin & Marshall College.
We recognize that in whatever path of life students choose, the ability to understand differing values, identify conflicts in thinking and reasoning, and find answers to complex questions is essential for cultivating qualities of innovation and leadership.
That's why we emphasize study in intimate classes, with the student-to-faculty ratio in some humanities majors, such as philosophy, as small as 5:1. And we also offer opportunities for field study and research that students might usually expect to pursue in the sciences or other fields. Students at F&M experience and engage with the questions that students elsewhere might only read about.
Students studying classics, for example, have kneeled alongside faculty with chisels in hand, digging at an archaeological site in Tuscany to find answers buried for millennia; and a student of philosophy traveled to Israel with an F&M professor to present a published paper they co-authored on the subject of emotions.
This is part of the distinctiveness in our approach to the humanities. Study at F&M spans the full range of study of human culture and the human experience, from classical archaeology to literature, to philosophy and cultural studies, and through languages.
We offer courses in 11 languages, ranging from introductory language courses to upper-level seminars taught in other languages on topics such as literature and film.
F&M embraces the principle that students who are linguistically, intellectually and culturally equipped to communicate successfully are better prepared to thrive in our multicultural society, both in the United States and around the world.
Mapping Deserted Greek Villages for Posterity
An F&M professor and his student researcher used the latest tool in archeology, the drone, to capture aerial photos in a survey of abandoned Greek villages. Read more
Student, Professor Take Research Findings to Israel
Professor of Philosophy Bennett Helm and senior Dan Kaplan traveled to Israel to present a paper they co-authored that explored emotions through a metaphysical lens. Read more
Humanities for Life
Students Study Arabic for Life Beyond F&M
Two Franklin & Marshall students have been selected for the U.S. Department of State's prestigious Critical Language Scholarship to study Arabic abroad hope to apply their language skills to their professional careers. Religious Studies major Morgan Kincade traveled to Jordan and psychology major Brenna Snyder traveled to Morocco as part of a select group of 550 undergraduate and graduate students from across the country in a program designed to promote use of critical language beyond college.
Did you know ...
Some of the world's most prominent leaders in all sectors of business and industry majored in the humanities as undergraduates at colleges across the country:
- Founder of the CNN and TBS cable TV networks, Ted Turner, was a classics major
- Former Walt Disney Company CEO Michael Eisner was a double major in English and theatre
- Former CEO of MTV, Judy McGrath, and the former CEO of Avon cosmetics, Andrea Jung, were both English majors
Among graduates of F&M:
- Former counsel to the U.S. House of Representatives Stan Brand graduated with a major in English
- Actor Treat Williams of the TV series "Heartland" and "Everwood" majored in drama (now configured as a major in theatre)
The Pulse of the Humanities at F&M
When Anton Chekhov's play "Three Sisters" premiered in 1901, it was instantly popular with audiences, who warmly embraced the playwright's exploration of the complexity of humanity. Franklin &...Read More
The tradition of the self-effacing musician performing a composer's work without showmanship has been a source of debate that dates to the 19th century, and Franklin & Marshall Assistant Professor...Read More
A flare from a well and a Amish farmer guiding his plow under an electric transmission line are a few of the subjects in the photos comprising "Contested Space: Witness to Place," on display at...Read More