The humanities are academic disciplines that study the human condition, using methods that are primarily analytical, critical, or speculative, as distinguished from the mainly empirical approaches of the natural sciences. The humanities include ancient and modern languages, literature, history, philosophy, religion, and visual and performing arts such as music and theatre. The humanities that are also regarded as social sciences include technology, history, anthropology, area studies, communication studies, cultural studies, law and linguistics.
   The study of individual modern and classical languages forms the backbone of the modern study of the humanities. While the scientific study of language is known as linguistics and is a social science, the study of languages is still central to the humanities. A good deal of twentieth-century and twenty-first-century philosophy has been devoted to the analysis of language and to the question of whether, as Wittgenstein claimed, many of our philosophical confusions derive from the vocabulary we use; literary theory has explored the rhetorical, associative, and ordering features of language; and historians have studied the development of languages across time. (Excerpt from Wikipedia)

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