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March 28, 2002 New Centre for the Humanities approved



by Barbara Black

The Council of the Faculty of Arts and Sciences has approved the establishment of the Concordia Centre for the Humanities.

A decade-long decline in enrolment in the humanities appears to have stopped, and with the rejuvenation of the faculty — 106 new professors hired in four years — the time seemed right to Dean Martin Singer.

“At Concordia, in the 1990s, the humanities suffered three simulataneous body blows: a significant decline in enrolment, particularly at the undergraduate level; the loss of a large number of senior professors, primarily through retirement and early retirement; and a drop in extenal research funding, which was already severely limited,” Singer said in his proposal to Faculty Council.

“Even more serious was the decline in the status of the humanities, both within universities (where they have increasingly been marginalized), and externally (where they have frequently been trivialized).”

The Concordia Centre for the Humanities (CCH) will seek to be a focal point for teaching, research and outreach activities in the field, providing a place for scholars from different aspects of the humanities to meet and work together. It will also seek to enhance financial support for graduate studies and research-related travel.

The financial support for the Centre is expected to come from a combination of public and private sources, and an implementation committee is now being assembled.