Culturalization of Humanities: Perspectives and Experiences
Humanities have provided humankind with a massive amount of theoretical and practical literature in the diverse domains of social sciences.
These disciplines have encountered an enormous sum of questions, challenges, and predicaments. Some of the problems lie in the intellectual and philosophical referentiality of those sciences, especially after the separation of science and religion and their institutions in Europe; for instance, August Comte (1857-1798) aspired to develop sociology into a “new religion.”
Other reasons pertain to the services which some of these disciplines have offered. For example, psychology has benefited company owners in the face of laborers, and anthropology has been in service for the occupation forces and the administration of the colonies.
The critical question that Humanities should answer today is: How has this vast amount of theoretical elaboration contributed to enhancing a more convenient vision and implementation in human life? Such a question arises at a time when social, economic, psychological, and moral issues are becoming more of serious problems, and the quality of individual and social life is declining and degrading to the lowest level.
Moreover, another crucial question directs our attention toward the real anticipated advantages of the outputs and applied initiatives of those disciplines, in societies which have maintained a different cultural, intellectual, and spiritual framework than those of the Western societies.
Should Humanities suffice with utilizing certain methods and epistemes to understand, explain, and analyze transformations at the level of the individual or society, as Western Humanities have done?
Or should they be critically reviewed with the purpose of coming up with new theories and methodologies that provide models of what is a necessary or possible state of human societies in the future?
It should be noted that in our usage of the terms “necessary” or “possible” we rely upon thought structures, epistemological framework or ethical and religious system which endorses a specific concept of humans and how their future should be. This specific thought, epistemological or ethical and religious contextualization of the human concept and its future applications is the meaning of ‘Culturalization of Humanities.’ Therefore, the methodological and epistemological bases of Western Humanities should not be the sole structures and methods for understanding humankind and society no matter how predominant and hegemonic Western Humanities might be.