Validating a Real Major

The classical “Renaissance man” such as Michelangelo and Leonardo Da Vinci have become virtually non-existent in contemporary times.  Today modern trades have become increasingly more specific and specialized; You would be hard pressed to find a person who is an inventor, architect, artist, and sculptor.  I think part of this is due to the accessibility of information.

We discussed in class the other day how it can be increasingly difficult to decipher professional texts, such as a case file for lawyer, a scientific journal, or a high level literary analysis.  Primarily, we agreed the difficulty of comprehension was due to the use of jargon specific to that field.

I feel that this is connected somewhat to “major shaming” as we discussed previously.  When discussing if a major is “real” the class for the most part agreed that the criteria for this was how much that particular field contributed to society.  It can be argued that the use of jargon is a way of protecting that knowledge, of keeping that trade exclusive in a sense, whether it be intentional or subconscious.  By making that information exclusive to only people within that field who have the knowledge to decipher that jargon, it validates that major.  This exclusivity also further makes sure that that field is still needed and necessary, especially in a time when information is so easily accessible.  If everyone could decipher the information for a given field, they could become proficient in it, making no longer needed/viable as a profession.


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