The major in Philosophy, History and Languages (PHL) brings together a vibrant community of students and faculty who share a concern with questions that are cross-disciplinary. Acquainting students with major intellectual trends in the Humanities, the major in Philosophy, History and Languages is problem-based or theme-based and draws upon diverse theoretical approaches. The major emphasises precision of scholarship and encourages students to chart new critical approaches to areas of study that span Philosophy, History and Languages. Depending on the theme chosen, students have the option to enroll in a range of courses, such as ethics, intellectual history, postcolonial studies, literary studies, humanistic study of ecology, ethnomusicology and political philosophy.
A central component of the major is the study of languages relevant to a student’s chosen theme or problem. We hope that over time Philosophy, History and Languages will encompass the study of both classical and contemporary South Asian and European languages. These languages include Gujarati, Hindi, Urdu, Persian, Sanskrit, Dutch, French, Japanese, and German. Students in Philosophy, History and Languages tailor their language study according to their intellectual interests and acquire advanced competency in their language of study. The Philosophy, History and Languages programme will be developing high-quality study and research of these languages in the School of Arts and Sciences. This will be accomplished by linking these languages to faculty research and teaching so that students are able to study languages from beginning to advanced levels and in a variety of genres.
The major in Philosophy, History and Languages is a customised programme in the Humanities and allows students to explore themes across disciplines. It has two major goals: (1) to open up a space for students who want to study the Humanities but are undecided between Philosophy, History and Languages/literatures; and (2) to create a space for students to work on a theme that lies at the interface of two or more disciplines in the Humanities, and therefore cannot be accommodated squarely within any of the traditional Humanities disciplines. Given its goals, Philosophy, History and Languages is a unique attempt to reorient and restructure the domain of the Humanities in the context of higher education in India.
Students of the Philosophy, History and Languages Major will acquire the skills required to succeed in professions such as law, media, politics, the development sector, government service, the civil services, publicity and marketing, journalism, translation, research, and further studies in higher education. The skills they will develop include: