Magic of 3am

Three in the morning is a bizarre time. It is a time to be full of dreams with no one around to say otherwise, or a time to be paralysed by fears with no one around to comfort you. As F. Scott Fitzgerald writes:

In a real dark night of the soul it is always three o’clock in the morning

“The Crack-Up”

Now, that’s a lovely and tragically romantic statement, but the reality of such a situation isn’t. You want to be filled with dreams, not tragedies at three in the morning. It is a time that sits between night and day, a time that is entirely yours to possess.

I am studying for my masters in English Literature and am trained to critically engage with social issues and analyse them. In a recent seminar, however, my lecturer outlined the sharp decline of humanities in favour for STEM subjects. Scary terms like “cost accountability” and “validation figures” were thrown around. It is bureaucracy gone mad. This current obsession with measuring everything via likes, stars, or views is destroying the humanities. Society needs humanities, because it needs critical thinkers to question things.

(Above is an answer to give those annoying people who ask, “Why do you study English when you already speak it?”.  It is an appropriate answer to give when all you want to do is scream, “Because of passion, you idiot!” and throw a book at their face).

Otherwise, we will end up in an unfeeling world like the one in the film Equilibrium, but with no Christian Bale to save us. Or worse, all alone with Nigel Farage under brainwashing UKIP rule. Humanities, such as English Literature, are important to keep hold of, despite their slipperiness and inability to fit neatly into categories to be measured. Chaos will not rein down upon society if a book has no likes or stars to judge its quality, requiring you to read it and come to your own unbiased conclusion.

Three in the morning is the time to trust your instincts and question society, with no external influences to sway you. Embrace your 3am dreams and question the fools who question you.


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