The humanities and the social sciences are under attack in the US and abroad and caught in the middle of contentious cultural wars on the future of higher education. Humanities departments face cutbacks and in some cases closure. Enrollments have dropped significantly as many students flock to the STEM majors. In short, the humanities face an unprecedented political and intellectual crisis. Consequently, the publication of Toward a New Enlightenment: The Case for Future-Oriented Humanities by Marcus Gabriel and colleagues under the auspices of The New Institute based in Hamburg is especially timely and important. This very thoughtful essay provides several suggestions regarding the value of the humanities to society and individual well-being in order to enhance the potential impact of the humanities on pressing social problems. The recommended strategies for the humanities may face political, policy, and educational complications.

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