00:00:00 | 3:02:50




Half as many college students major in the humanities as did 50 years ago. Is this cause for concern? What's college for? Guest host Barbara Bogaev looks at what's at stake when higher education becomes more career focused and fewer students study the humanities. Also, a  new court decision calls NSA surveillance legal, and more men on the job are taking advantage of paternity leave. It turns out the time off for men can have far-reaching benefits for women, including helping to close the gender pay gap and shatter the glass ceiling. 

Banner image: Tricia Wang

Making News New Court Decision Calls NSA Surveillance Legal 7 MIN, 21 SEC

A federal court in New York ruled today that the National Security Agency's bulk collection of Americans' telephone records is constitutional just a few weeks after a Washington District Court Judge Richard Leon found that the NSA program violates the constitutional ban on unreasonable search. District Court Judge William Pauley argues today that the program "represents the government's counter-punch" to take out al-Qaeda's terror network by connecting the dots in fleeting, random communications. Stephen Vladeck is a professor of law at American University.

Stephen Vladeck, University of Texas at Austin (@steve_vladeck)

Main Topic Are the Humanities in Crisis? 35 MIN, 15 SEC

Only about 12% of all college students major in the humanities, a big change from just 50 years ago, when there were twice as many. Only about 7% major in subjects like English, Music or Art. The cost of college and concerns about employment are funneling more students into business and technology degrees, and we certainly need engineers, scientists and blue collar laborers, but at what price to American culture? Are we raising a generation of Americans that doesn't know enough about the humanities? What does it take to create a well-rounded society? What's at stake in education and society when our curricula become more career-focused and less aimed at creating well-rounded individuals?

Anthony Carnevale, Georgetown University
Heidi Tworek, Harvard University (@HeidiTworek)
Lee Siegel, writer and author
Gary Gutting, University of Notre Dame

Today's Talking Point The Case for Paternity Leave 7 MIN, 51 SEC

In 2002 California guaranteed six weeks of paid leave for both mothers and fathers. New Jersey and Rhode Island have since anted up with 12 and 13 weeks, and other states are setting up similar policies. Many tech and Fortune 500 companies offer paid leave, and even Major League Baseball gives new dads paid time off. While the benefits to men and their newborn children are obvious, the long range benefits for the advancement of women in their careers and towards making workplaces more family friendly are only just now coming to light. Liza Mundi is a Bernard Schwartz Fellow at the New America Foundation and the author of The Richer Sex: How the New Majority of Female Breadwinners Is Transforming Sex, Love and Family.

Liza Mundy, New America Foundation (@lizamundy‎)

The Richer Sex

Liza Mundy

Subscribe to the 5 Things To Do newsletter

Never miss the best of what to do with your free time.


More From Which Way, L.A.?


Latest From KCRW

View Schedule


View All Events


Player Embed Code