43. Course discussion
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Well gentlemen, we've almost finished our second semester at this university.
What do you think of all the courses we attend?
On the whole, I'd say they're quite good,
apart from Social History, which I find to be a little too inexact.
Yes, the lecturer's style is also very very dull.
I certainly agree with you there,
although I would say that the textbook is more interesting. 'Welfare State'.
The subtitle says, 'An examination of social development in the 20th century.'
Yes, 'Welfare State' is a good book, but look how many pages it has.
I agree. It's just too long to be easily read.
Far too long, although it's certainly well written in parts.
Yes, and if you compare it to the textbook for Cultural Studies, what's it called?
'Inner Views', I think.
No, that's the book for Media Studies, and we finished that subject last semester.
The book you're thinking of is 'In Perspective'.
Sorry, you're right. 'In Perspective'.
And the subtitle says, 'A comparison of social groups.'
Somewhat interesting, wouldn't you say?
Well, mildly so, as is the subject,
dealing as it does with such a wide variety of issues,
but the book itself certainly oversimplifies a very complex subject.
I agree. I also got annoyed at its constant oversimplification.
Life is more complicated than what it suggests.
Yes, but what you call 'oversimplifying' may well be considered 'clarifying'.
Look at this other textbook, 'Government in Action'.
Some may say that it also oversimplifies,
but it must do so in order to present a coherent picture of an equally complex subject.
'Government in Action'? Which subject...?
It's the textbook for 'Political Theory'.
Oh, I hate politics.
That's why I don't like the 'Active Leadership' subject, either.
And most of the stuff in that 'Political Theory' textbook is based on the American system.
You see, it's written by Americans, so it's not even relevant to us here.
I'd agree with you there,
it's not relevant to us at all, since our government uses the Westminster system.
Yes, I suppose that is a problem.
Well, it seems we all have certain criticisms about the textbooks we're using,
but at the same time, we all like some elements, at least, of the subjects we're studying.
What's your favourite subject, David?
I'm not sure. I like Political Theory, but...
Cultural Studies is by far the best, even better than Political Theory,
which I also like, but just not as much.
Why do you say that, Steve?
I was thinking, perhaps, Social History is worth considering as best.
Social History is good, but I made my choice because the subject is relevant to this modern society.
But so is Social History, and I like the historical element,
which the other subjects lack.
Even Political Theory examines history only briefly, and in a very narrow way,
so I'd say Social History is the most rewarding for me.
What about you, Susan?
I think Social History is certainly very good,
but Political Theory is, in fact, the best,
since basically, every human system boils down to politics.
So, despite a certain irrelevancy in the details,
the basic message remains as relevant as ever.
Oh Susan, you can't be serious.
Let's ask Olive, again.
She's over there.
Olive! Which subject do you think is the best?
Ah, a difficult question.
I'm very interested in culture,
so Cultural Studies is certainly my cup of tea,
but I'm politically active also, and hope to pursue this as a career,
so Political Theory would be the one I'd pick.
I don't believe it. Even with that irrelevant textbook?
Don't listen to him, Olive; you have a right to your own opinion.