David Look (HOD)
From the Stone Age to the Space shuttle, from slavery to Barak Obama, from rights for a few to rights for all, from “Fore Score and Twenty” to “ I have a Dream”, from patriarchy to feminism, from the Khoi-San to Tutu, this is the grand narrative and wonderful adventure that Hilton boys explore when they enter the History Department .
History, as we see it at Hilton, is a systematic mode of enquiry, a way of investigating the past so that the present can be understood and the future prepared for. This ordered study requires the acquisition of vital communication and analytical skills which are in increasing demand at university and in the modern work place.
Michael Roth in his book, Beyond the University, Why Liberal Education Matters writes:
“For generations, literate and well-rounded people were seen as essential to a healthy republic. Broadly educated citizens aren’t just collections of skills-they are whole people. Humanistic education is integral to our success as a nation as it enriches the lives of students by enhancing their capacities for shaping themselves and reinventing the world they will inhabit… Access to a broad, self-critical and pragmatic education remains essential for a culture that prizes innovation and an economy that depends upon it. It also remains essential for a society that aspires to being democratic”
The philosopher Nussbaum suggests that Humanities and the Arts are the places where students acquire the critical literatures necessary to keep democracy alive. She writes
“if we continue to ask our schools to turn out useful profit makers rather than thoughtful citizens our world will become one of technically trained people who do not know how to criticize authority, useful profit makers with obtuse imaginations.. these impede the creations of a decent world culture.”
We firmly believe that History equips Hilton boys to
“think well about the politics that affect nations, but also to recognize fellow citizens as people with equal rights even though they may be different in race, religion, gender and sexuality, to look at them with respect not just as tools to be manipulated for one’s own profit”