Go Forward

Start of an odyssey in the “archipelago of knowledge”  Masato Goda, Dean of the School of Arts and Letters

“Letters entrusted to you”

Powers of imagination or vision are among the most important abilities for people to overcome all the difficulties they encounter in the world. Both the ability to sense different phenomena and that to analyze and synthesize them also depend on the power of imagination. The philosopher Immanuel Kant likened this power of imagination to an art hidden in the darkness of the soul and a monogram (a designed string of letters). This agrees perfectly with the “School of Arts and Letters,” our name in English. What kinds of forms and letters are written in the darkness of our souls? They are also letters (correspondences) sent to us by someone. The study of either literature or the humanities is aimed at deciphering these forms, characters, and letters. As we decipher, we also have to send letters for the future to someone else in turn.

“An archipelago of knowledge – the School of Arts and Letters”

The educational philosophy of the Meiji University School of Arts and Letters is “to cultivate a wide range of educated people with thorough specialized knowledge.” A high level of specialization is not necessarily incompatible with a wide-ranging education. At the School of Arts and Letters, we strive to offer opportunities for learning that can reconcile these two goals. To this end, we endeavor to provide subjects and majors that make this possible, as well as to offer detailed educational guidance and devise both novel and rich curricula. More specifically, the School offers 13 majors in a structure composed of three departments: the Department of Literature, which delves into the diverse activities of human beings related to language and symbols in the broad sense; the Department of History and Geography, which attempts to grasp the dynamism of human endeavors in both spatial and temporal terms; and the Department of Psycho-Social Studies, which ponders humanity with respect to both its internal and social natures. We have made arrangements so that our students can attain a view of humankind and the world that is as multifaceted and nuanced as possible, and build a diverse network on their own initiative. Furthermore, we intend to offer a new philosophy major in our Department of Psycho-Social Studies and currently applying for approval.

“Mapping of new world citizens”

This network is nothing less than an archipelago of knowledge. No two islands are the same. Complex ocean currents separate the islands from each other. I nevertheless urge you to discover the joy that comes from having the courage to cross from one island to another in our School of Arts and Letters. By all means, please study in our School and master the know-how needed to get through difficult straits. This could even be regarded as a duty of those who have earned the opportunity to study at a university in a world full of so much misery.
Let us learn together in this archipelago of knowledge, toward the goal of becoming autonomous citizen intellectuals and new world citizens.