MIT Faculty Newsletter  
Vol. XXI No. 4
March / April / May 2009
Should One Size Fit All?
Rethinking the Math Core
Tom Kochan New Faculty Chair
Distrust of Educational Innovations
Engineering Excellence in Challenging Times
Leadership Skills for Engineering and
Science Faculty
Interview with Director of MIT Medical
Dr. William Kettyle
Update on the Faculty Renewal Program
Newsletter Adds Two Board Members
The Moral Moment: Departing Words from
the Outgoing Faculty Chair
MIT Faculty Vote to Make Their Articles Openly Available
TA Training Bootcamp Reinforces Curriculum Innovations and Improves Recitation Experience in Freshman Chemistry Course
MIT Faculty Work/Life Website Created
MISTI Launches Call for Second Round of Global Seed Fund Proposals
Laughing Together
West Garage
Bernard M. Gordon-MIT Leadership Program: Developing Engineering Leaders of Tomorrow
The Need for Interdisciplinary Education
MIT 150 Exhibit to Celebrate Institute's
150th Birthday
The Federal Research Dollar
on the MIT Campus
The Future of Medical Care?
Printable Version

Arts & Humanities at MIT

Laughing Together
West Garage

Helen Elaine Lee

Photo Essay: West Garage

With this issue of the Faculty Newsletter we initiate another regular feature: Arts & Humanities at MIT.

Some faculty in these disciplines feel that they live on the margin of the Institute, and many other MIT faculty members have no idea what goes on in this realm of academic life. They have only a vague notion that the School of Humanities and Social Sciences somehow serves the rest of the Institute and facilitates its missions in the areas of science and engineering and economics.

But all over our campus people are writing poems and novels and plays, composing music and dance, examining and criticizing culture, investigating language and literature, considering and shaping the ever-shifting forces of narrative and media. Faculty members, students, and staff are raising their voices in myriad ways about what matters in our lives and our society. And these efforts enrich our community in untold ways. Indeed, they give it life.

As poet and Nobel laureate Pablo Neruda said, poetry is revolutionary, as it asks: Imagine the world like this.

Imagining is what we do at MIT. It is the work of the scientist and the engineer to imagine, discover, and invent. And it is also the essential work of the artist and humanist to help us to imagine ourselves, our institutions, and our environments differently and to bring these efforts to bear on the work of the scientist and engineer.

Through this new feature, we hope to shed light on what kinds of imaginings are going on in the arts and humanities at MIT, what people are thinking about and grappling with in these areas, and how these unique contributions enrich the other disciplines.

In each issue we hope to include articles on work being done in the arts and humanities by our faculty members, articles on the roles of these disciplines and their relationship with the rest of the Institute, as well as literary and visual artwork created by members of the MIT community.

Please submit your articles and work ( so that the entire faculty can see and recognize what a vital role the arts and humanities play at MIT.

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