Is a philosophy degree pointless?
- smallLv 79 months agoFavorite Answer
Yes, as pointless as life itself is !
In today's world, nobody goes for a degree merely for acquiring knowledge and wisdom...... moreover, most degree education is also getting worse in quality day-by-day..... degrees are meant these days to get a well paying job, and the Philosophy degree singularly fails in this respect.
- 9 months ago
My best friend uses his Ph.D. in Philosophy from Columbia University to teach prisoners in Oregon State Prison. I tell him his mind and time is too valuable for that but he sees his role in keeping with "being a Christian."
- darkvelvetrainLv 79 months ago
Not pointless at all. In fact, other than mathematics and engineering majors, philosophy majors tend to have the highest LSAT scores and among the highest law school completion rates. So it has its purpose.
- RAGHAVENDRANLv 49 months ago
Yes. Its hard to find any job for it other than teaching.
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- 9 months ago
Not pointless, but not really in demand. If you really want to write about and or teach philosophy it will help you. But don't expect to get rich.
- 9 months ago
No its not useless if it can get you a teaching job in a university or something high-paying. Smart people have used philosophy so its not dumb.
I use concepts of philosophy and used analogies on a presentation speech I had. I used that to make things more understandable and relatable to my small audience. A guy who was a professor for many years asked me, why didn't I apply as a philosophy professor, then he realized that I actually finished a degree with computers and that would not qualify me for the role.
- 7FlightsupLv 69 months ago
Philosophy is supposed to frustrate those seeking Truth, so they realize that they need to stop their thought gyrations and have no thoughts, which is what the next level does: meditating in a yoga to silence your mind.
- JohnLv 79 months ago
Pretty much no philosophy jobs beyond teaching more philosophy. Or become a philospher proper and write obscure books. I took logic in college as part of my major and THAT I found quite useful.
- j153eLv 79 months ago
As so-called current philosophy in some unis is primarily politicized, yes, if one is looking for political wisdom...it is better to major in political science, which in part draws from such Rawlsian, etc. social-ist thinkers.
If one is seeking self-awareness, philosophy provides the insight that the awareness level one begins with is the awareness level one usually concludes with, little progress being made in the individual's self-awareness, rather, as Solomon noted, more tedium rather Te Deum.(Wikipedia has an entry on Te Deum).
As "megalomaniac" notes, a beginning logic course, Quee Nelson's "The Slightest Philosophy," and Louis P. Pojman's "Ethics: Discovering Right and Wrong" are about all one needs to move on with point-making and moral decision-making. Philosophy teaches there are no enduring human morals, simply opinions informed by axioms one accepts as obvious. Logic also teaches that there are, for a given axiom-developed system used as algorithm for reasoning, some true/false claims that are unprovable in that system (i.e., a greater system is required to answer those of the first system...John von Neumann's "framing" solution to Kurt Godel's Incompleteness Theorems ("There's Something about Godel")).
Wittgenstein, Whitehead, and Husserl stand as the great/influential philosophers of the 20th century, and one may read in them of language games reducing all philosophy to definitions (a kind of mental rationalist redux of Wittgenstein's physical-facts empiricism of his "Tractatus"), of Whitehead's process philosophy and process religion leading to the proof that "God is Love," and of Husserl's epoche as a reducing of preconceived notions re events and thoughts.
So, unless you enjoy teaching the subject, philosophy as self-awareness may profitably be supplanted by Abraham Maalow (re "pilgrim's progress" in labor as self-actualization, e.g. "The Farther Reaches of Human Nature," similar to Viktor Frankl's "Man's Search for Meaning," and similar to Matthew Crawford's "Shop Class as Soulcraft"), Dr. Maria Montessori (how people learn easily and well, similar to Mihaly C.'s "Flow"), and Edith Stein (empathy),
If you're moving toward law, try correlating a logic class and Pojman and Nelson, with a major germane to your presumed legal speciality, e.g. economics, political science, psychology, biology, etc.
A major influence on students is the quality of the teaching; ask about the goodness of the faculty in a given major, and that may help inform your decision. Typically, undergraduate students learn better if a) they're in the top half of their major's class (i.e., better to choose USC than Harvard or Stanford, if you're going to be in the lower half at the latter) and b) if they're in a smaller college where they can assume leadership roles in major-related group activities. As you're presumably a female, females of course may experience psychological pressure to follow the males' leadership, which is often reasonable, yet not necessarily so (Shaunti Feldhahn, "For Couples Only").
Also, given the politicization of philosophy depts., the point of existential life is given by some historical cause, e.g. saving the world by fighting climate change. Without that, there is no point to existential life. Thus, unless one reads and realizes what a Plato or especially a Plotinus ("Return to the One: Plotinus's Guide to God-Realization," Brian Hines) achieved, the "point" of life is a) found in one's personal relationship with and cultivation of God, or Father-Mother, Son-Daughter, and Holy Spirit, and b) in family and vocation.
Also, you might benefit by reading Aaron Clarey's "Worthless: The Young Person's Indispensable Guide to Choosing the Right Major." For example, correlating your vocational interests, family plans, etc. with your major is wise. Some philosophy depts'.orientation has become less than objective, e.g. per politicization, political correctness, etc., to the "degree" that there is doctrinaire non-inconsideration of axioms and assumptions outside the current dogma--a kind of antithesis of the spirit of philosophical inquiry. On the other hand, a good teaching dept. in philosophy might be far better than a politicized English studies dept, which are also notorious for going off the rails, becoming more like some "studies" depts., an economic waste of students' time, perhaps helpful as therapy, but even their therapeutics are questionable..
- megalomaniacLv 79 months ago
No, one can learn how to actually make a point with a philosophy degree. Logic and ethics are sadly lacking in our society and philosophy can help with both (and a lot more).