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What are the humanities?

The humanities can be described as the study of how people process and document the human experience. Since humans have been able, we have used philosophy, literature, religion, art, music, history and language to understand and record our world. These modes of expression have become some of the subjects that traditionally fall under the humanities umbrella. Knowledge of these records of human experience gives us the opportunity to feel a sense of connection to those who have come before us, as well as to our contemporaries.

Study the Humanities at Stanford


Experience the Humanities at Stanford

Continuing Studies

Stanford Continuing Studies offers a broad range of courses, seminars, and workshops, primarily in the liberal arts, designed to enhance the learning and enrich the lives of people in the Bay Area.

Stanford Events Calendar

Humanities related events at Stanford, including lectures, conferences, performing arts, exhibitions and cultural activities can be found on the Events at Stanford website.

Stanford Live Arts

Stanford Live is the premier arts presenter and producer in Silicon Valley. Now entering its 38th year at Stanford University, Stanford Live reaches a diverse audience through performances of music, theater, dance, spoken word, and multimedia works and is a destination for artists developing new work.

The Cantor Arts Center

The Cantor Arts Center's diverse collections span continents, cultures, and 4,000 years of art history and include the largest gathering of Rodin bronzes outside Paris.

Stanford iTunes

Stanford on iTunes U provides access to a wide range of Stanford-related digital audio content via Apple’s iTunes Store. If you have iTunes software click on the “Open Stanford on iTunes U” button and the Stanford iTunes page will open. You will find humanities related content under the Arts and Humanities category section.

Stanford Center for Biomedical Ethics, Program on Arts, Humanities & Medicine

The Arts, Humanities and Medicine Program promotes creative and scholarly work at the intersections between the arts, humanities and medicine in order to enhance our understanding of the contextual meanings of illness, healthcare, and the human condition.