No, this would work nicely

Foundational texts like The Canterbury Tales and Anglo-Saxon epic Beowulf would no longer be taught under proposals to scrap medieval literature.

Instead the English faculty will be refocused to drop centuries of the literary canon and deliver a “decolonised” curriculum devoted to diversity.

Academics now facing redundancy were told via email: “The aim of our proposals (is) to offer a suite of undergraduate degrees that provide modules which students expect of an English degree.”

New modules described as “excitingly innovative” would cover: “A chronological literary history, a selection of modules on race, ethnicity, sexuality and diversity, a decolonised curriculum, and new employability modules.”

The employability module might start with “Do STEM not English” perhaps?

32 thoughts on “No, this would work nicely”

  1. Being able to blather about “race, ethnicity, sexuality and diversity” seems to be in high demand lately, given how many people are doing it. This degree will be a fast track to a job in HR, or perhaps writing for the Guardian.

  2. Employability is just a buzzword.
    The point is to inculcate a sense of moral and intellectual superiority amongst lazy, dim people, who will then unthinkingly support the politics served up as a side rather than give up on their status.

  3. If they want to decolonise academia they can start by decolonising it of the woke sjw infestation. WTF has any of that list got to do with an English degree?

  4. How is dropping works written hundreds of years before the British Empire decolonising the curriculum?

    Actually the real reason is easy to understand. Anglo-Saxon and medieval literature. is much harder than pontificating about race and gender. Leicester is clearly planning to exploit the thicker end of the student market.

  5. +1 for Ottokring.

    ‘The employability module might start with “Do STEM not English” perhaps?’

    The best advice I’ve heard (and pass on where I can) is ‘Unless you want to study a serious subject at a serious university it’s not worth going’, which I clarify to mean any Uni that’s not a former poly and avoid any subject with ‘studies’ in the title.

  6. Alas, Andy ex-Taiwan, this is exactly where everything has gone horribly wrong. I did exactly what you describe, but that was 30+ years ago and because we had good lecturers who taught us how to think, how to write, how to debate and how to use a library and sources, I found it very easy to get jobs in technical areas where today I wouldn’t even get someone to read my CV. Companies were prepared to train graduates in those days. My training as an historian meant that I became an expert at diagnostics because I could follow evidence trails, spot patterns and gather information together, but was a terrible programmer because I could not think in straight lines.

    When I became a manager and interviewed people I found that being a comp sci grad only gave a newcomer a few months advantage over a mathematician or engineer.

    I weep for modern graduates, the inflation in degrees coupled with a narrowing of minds and lack of training in companies means that really the ability to say “Wilt þu fries mid þam habban?” will only get you a job working as a housing officer in Bogshire County Council. If you’re really lucky it might get you gigs on telly like Ash Sarkar.

  7. Geats’ Lives Matter.

    Of course the reality of the story is “You’ve done it now, Beowulf, here comes Grendel’s mum!”

  8. One thing more, sorry I meant to include this in my post above. I noticed when I was doing my Masters that there was a world of difference between the sexes when presenting. The men were much more secure in front of an audience than the women. I asked around and they had all been given practical lessons in presenting – the lads were happy to mug up by their slideshows, but the girls were rooted to the spot, reading monotonously from a script and that seemed to be standard across many courses.

  9. The Unis need to be purged of marxist scum not English. End loans and go back to 10% of eligible pop on grants attending only. Most made good use of their time then because it was a benefit earned by those with brains/drive. True some upper class twits got there as well but it would still be better than todays debt ruin for dumbed down BS for a mass of chumps.

    Not likely with Blojob Johnson around.

  10. Instead the English faculty will be refocused to drop centuries of the literary canon and deliver a “decolonised” curriculum devoted to diversity.

    Instead the English faculty will be refocused to drop centuries of English literature and deliver a “colonised curriculum” devoted to colonists.

  11. As someone who loves to rummage through history books, I naturally disagree with dropping Beowulf, and even the Canterbury Tales.

    Why not simply have a degree in Wokery for those who like it, and let the people who like Eng Lit or STEM just get on with it.

  12. Why not simply have a degree in Wokery for those who like it, and let the people who like Eng Lit or STEM just get on with it.

    Because the boots aren’t just for cosplay.

  13. Andrew M,

    “Being able to blather about “race, ethnicity, sexuality and diversity” seems to be in high demand lately, given how many people are doing it. This degree will be a fast track to a job in HR, or perhaps writing for the Guardian.”

    Actually, no-one much cares. I’ve worked with a couple of HR teams (one in a local authority) and most of them didn’t have degrees. The only advantage of having a degree is when the contest is two inexperienced people, one with a degree, one with A levels. You’ll get further by starting at a lower grade job and working hard and moving up in the company over 3 years. Three years experience in HR is of more value to a company wanting HR staff than someone with a degree and a load of university stuff.

    The only reason to do a degree nowadays is because you want to work in a specialised field with lots to learn, and that industry cares about you having a degree. I’m not that convinced that spending 3 years doing comp sci is that useful now. They spend a lot of time on things that no-one cares much about, things mostly made redundant by high levels of abstraction. There was a time when understanding the different advantages to certain sort algorithms, but when you’re running on Xeon processors, it’s a fraction of a second either way.

  14. Ottokring,

    “Companies were prepared to train graduates in those days.”

    That was largely because of the lack of mobility of people. People didn’t quit jobs, they stayed with an employer for 10+ years, sometimes for life. Different world today.

    If I hired someone off the street with no prior, it would cost me £10K+ in classroom training to get them to junior programmer level. And at the end of that, they can hand in their notice. £10K down the toilet. That’s why training ended.

    For most software people, training is a £25/month Pluralsight course.

  15. Given the overwhelming bias to the Left in Academia, especially the Arts, I am a bit confused as to where these academics thought the ship they were on, and enthusiastically steering, was actually going.

  16. BoM4, degrees also serve as a signalling mechanism of quality. Doing a hard degree at a good university is a good way to get an interview in a competitive field. Leicester is a second division university for English Lit (36th). English lit is an OK subject – it’s not law or medicine, but it’s above Women’s studies.

    https://www.thecompleteuniversityguide.co.uk/league-tables/rankings/english

    I’m told that the standard of students for Leicester is about what one would expect of a second class university (average), but some of the (ethnically Indian) locals (who don’t to leave home) are fairly good.

  17. BoM4

    yeah but, no but…

    My first employer, trained me, for which I am eternally grateful, and I really wanted to make a career there, but the management changed and they became such a bunch of arseholes that I left after 6 years. They changed their business model and my division was closed soon after I left, everyone else was either sacked or had to face the “new reality”. I went back as a freelancer a few years later, there were a few who had survived all that time, but they were really the dullest of my old colleagues, who did not have the volition or desire to go somewhere else because they had found their niche.

    sigh.

  18. @BOM4

    > I’m not that convinced that spending 3 years doing comp sci is that useful now. They spend a lot of time on things that no-one cares much about, things mostly made redundant by high levels of abstraction. There was a time when understanding the different advantages to certain sort algorithms, but when you’re running on Xeon processors, it’s a fraction of a second either way.

    You’ve obviously never been for an interview with Google, Amazon, or Facebook etc. or even for a company heavily using databases. Wokery aside these companies are doing things technically which are really game changing, and at a huge scale. They absolutely care about these things. It doesn’t take a particularly large dataset by modern standards for a O2 (O squared) algorithm to consume huge resources where even an inefficiently coded O(n) algorithm wouldn’t. So there is still a market for Comp-Sci graduates.

  19. I am a bit confused as to where these academics thought the ship they were on, and enthusiastically steering, was actually going.

    My Anglo-Saxon tutor (a rather distinguished one as it happens) was a dyed-in-the-wool lefty. I wonder how he’d feel to be binned in this fashion… Of course in those days being a dyed-in-the-wool lefty didn’t necessarily mean being in favour of drag kids and against free speech and the working classes.

  20. Ian Reid,

    “You’ve obviously never been for an interview with Google, Amazon, or Facebook etc. or even for a company heavily using databases. Wokery aside these companies are doing things technically which are really game changing, and at a huge scale. They absolutely care about these things. It doesn’t take a particularly large dataset by modern standards for a O2 (O squared) algorithm to consume huge resources where even an inefficiently coded O(n) algorithm wouldn’t. So there is still a market for Comp-Sci graduates.”

    That’s completely fair. If you’re building at massive scale, processing data from massive scientific experiments, or running embedded, you need this.

    But that’s not that actually that many people, even in Facebook or Google. Lots of software in Facebook is PHP. Lots of Google software is Python.

    I’m just saying that back in the 1980s, understanding things like how disks were organised or different sorting algorithms were still quite necessary for regular application development. We did all sorts of clever tweaks to get things to run in 6 hours instead of 16 that you wouldn’t spend money on today. Just buy another server for the rack, and keep the code simple.

  21. Chaucer was a decoloniser – he wrote in English when the King still spoke French. Christ, what fools these fuckers are.

  22. @ Bloke on M4
    “If I hired someone off the street with no prior, it would cost me £10K+ in classroom training to get them to junior programmer level.”
    Why? I never got a single day’s classroom training to get me to junior programmer level.

  23. @John77 We’re of the age where computer skills could be ( and often had to be..) self-taught, and proven actual skill could get you far, regardless of your background.
    Nowadays you need certification, and that’s what you’re actually paying for…

  24. As far as the literature is concerned… I can see why they want them gone.
    After all.. tales of self-reliance and heroism, or in the case of Chaucer, satire against the PtB does not fit the Narrative…

  25. Clearly the minds of the academics in the English department are so enfeebled and weakened by the burden of dealing with the ever-changing agendas of wokism that they are no longer able to comprehend anything written before Owen Jones began favouring us all with his opinions, anything more original than an Instagram post, anything more insightful than Teletubbies or anything longer than a Tweet.

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