We’re in the public sphere and political history is thriving.
The real reason for the drop in history majors is that students and parents refuse to believe your last line is true: “History majors’ median earnings are higher than other college graduates’”
The shift to social and cultural history, and the relative eclipse of political and diplomatic history, happened four decades ago.
As that @benmschmidt piece notes, there were still *plenty* of majors through 2008. Something big happened to the economy around then, I think?
When I hear students debating whether or not they should major in History, the lack of political and diplomatic history is never an issue.
It’s always — always — some version of “my parents want me to get a STEM degree so I can get a job”
Meanwhile, our advisory board is filled with tech and business folks who always say that they prefer History majors because of the skills students learn — how to analyze evidence, how to craft an argument from data, and most of all, how to write well.
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