"Could there possibly be a more difficult book out there to read? I don't understand anything I just read!" These were the thoughts circulating through my mind each time I picked up Nussbaum's "Cultivating Humanity." In this paper I am going to attempt to make clearer Nussbaum's thoughts, beliefs, and statements, and add to that my own opinion on her thoughts: whether I agree or disagree.
Critical thinking can be simply defined as analyzing thoughts. Argument may perhaps be the most effective style of critical thinking. Nussbaum herself states that "failure to think critically we need argument, an essential tool of civic freedom." (Nussbaum 19). .
In chapter four of "Cultivating Humanity," I found that it was very difficult to find an instance of critical thinking. She does state however that both Americans and Europeans are alike in that they both know little about other religions around the world, such as Islam. She goes on to state "we know little about other nations" ideas of work, of business dealings, of family, of morality. This ignorance has led to moral and political error, to failures in human sensitivity and in sheer common sense." (116). The author is analyzing the ignorance of not only the Americans now, but also the Europeans. This leaves the passage as a critical thought.
Students are not taught much about the beliefs of other faiths besides that of the faith of the student's school. If one is not taught, or has not experienced different beliefs, then there is no possible way for that person to know about them. Therefore leading to the ignorance of many American and European people. This is a simple concept to comprehend. So in this way, I agree with Nussbaum. Education needs to direct more attention towards the world rather than one particular place in the world. This would make every student smarter.
Not many people know much about diverse cultures. There are many diverse cultures in the world.