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Disclaimer: This post is only meant to portray the thoughts of a frustrated Humanities major in Pakistan. The thoughts represented may not necessarily portray to the general public.
Stagnation. That’s the word.
I am a reader, a blogger, a writer. Give me a novel and I’m in my happy place. I blog when I’m bored, when I have a sudden creative spark or simply because I want to. Put me up with a topic and a deadline and I will make sure I give everything to the piece I write.
I say stagnation’s the correct word because creativity seems to be dying out.
Pakistan is a country of stereotypes. If a student does not decide to become a Doctor or an Engineer, he or she is degraded to the category of useless students who can’t really do anything. I am not saying that the aforementioned two professions are derogatory in anyway – in fact, they are truly excellent careers to undertake – but they are not the only two choices we have. A student interested in studying Biology should have more options than the sole one of becoming a Doctor. This is where we fall into a stereotype – the stereotype of studying anything technical.
The single most question asked is, “What will you do with your major?” Being a Humanities major, I have the options of undertaking a wide variety of careers; anything that is people-oriented goes. But of course, since I can’t specifically point out a company that will hire a Humanities major, my education is considered useless.
At LUMS, I have come across a truly remarkable Social Sciences faculty. It truly makes one wonder why this creativity is not considered worthwhile. Take a look at our writers or our soaps and one can gain an insight into the creativity rampant in this country. We are by no means a monochrome nation, yet we will be if we keep on following the stereotype of a technical education. Education is not about getting into the best colleges and studying something that will guarantee a good paying job. It is about doing what you like and undertaking a career you enjoy, regardless of the number of zeroes on your first paycheck. The problem we face, in this country, is that we are often unable to make our best abilities our primary means of education because it does not fit into the conventions we are forced to follow.
Liberal arts is one of the most competitive majors in the United States, and when researching my major I came across an article that talked about how the number of Philosophy majors has been on a rise there. In Pakistan, despite the enormous budding talent and creativity we have, it is one of the most underrated and undervalued majors.
We need to move forward. We need to rid ourselves of our conventions and stereotypes. We need to allow the generations after us the options of choosing to study what they want to, rather than what they are forced to.
We need to stop ourselves from stagnating.