Where did the Renaissance men go?

Brenna McNamara

I can’t formulate my feelings of aversion about the way things are going in this world into an outline. I can’t look at a piece of art and tell you what techniques invoke such emotion in me. I can’t play music. I don’t know what the heck I am looking up at on a clear summer night.

But I can feel. I can absorb all of those things and create some abstract way of describing them. And I get happiness from that. Unfortunately, that’s my problem. I could earn a doctorate in “feeling,” but in reality it’s emotions that are cheap, not words. In a world that is becoming so technical, so mathematic, is there any room for creativity?

We live in a society obsessed with the bottom line. We are in a rush to get to the top, find the easiest solutions and be successful. Its not a phone anymore, it’s the iPhone. They aren’t just doctors, there are pediatric orthopedic finger doctors. As Americans, we can’t just be. We have to be the best. We have to specialize. So long to mom-and-pop shops. They’re replaced by corporate chains that offer much more of everything, except personality. It’s good to go to a lawyer that specializes in eviction processes — obviously he knows his stuff. Good for him. But I’m one of those flighty people who find attending classes upon classes about writing contracts a bit dry.

Yes, people do have different strengths. There’s an enormous difference between the left brain and the right brain, this is only natural. But I’m just posing the thought that possibly our society is being influenced by all the pressure to find the fastest solution and the hardest facts. Emotions and instinct are far too abstract for such a concrete world.

In this path to success, too many times a person must rule out passions and hobbies because they aren’t on this narrowed down road to making money. Anymore, it seems pointless to even wonder what stars I see in the night sky unless I’m an astronomer. I can appreciate a painting, but if I can’t have it, recreate it, or major in art history, my passion seems fruitless. I am pissed at our country and this meaningless violence, but since I’m not part of the government, I am just preaching or being ridiculed for being so idealistic.

Where did the Renaissance men go? Those men of DaVinci’s time who were masters of art, poetry, astronomy, anatomy and architecture. Congratulations to anyone nowadays who could accomplish all of that. Hopefully you didn’t get too many people asking you “how are you going to turn all those majors into a career?”

Brenna McNamara is a freshman prejournalism major and columnist for the Daily Kent Stater. Contact her at [email protected].