View Full Version : Help settle a bet: More intellectually challenging?

June 7th, 2004, 02:58 PM
A.) A Law degree (3 intensive years of studying preparing for the bar exam)


B.) A Ph.D in English Literature (2-3 years for a Masters, another 4-6 on the Ph.D. The last two of course spent writing a 150-300 page doctoral dissertation, followed by an oral defense)

I'm curious to hear your opinions. Don't let your own biases influence your answer.

Personally, I think there are a ton of juris doctorates and a professor of English has to have an incredible breadth of knowlege ranging from history, literature, politics and psychology.

But that's just me.

June 7th, 2004, 04:19 PM
Both being particularly dependent on knowledge, understanding, and interpretation of historical precedent, the intellectual challenge of either rests on one's interpretive trajectory, and to what end these insights are applied.

Law may be more rigorous in the sense that it is result-based, and that although there are different ways of arriving at the same outcome, there is always a rigid criterion for evaluating it.

Literature on the other hand is far more subjective with respect to its 'allusions' and references. The goal of Literature being different than Law in that the motivation for creating it is less directly result oriented, the latitude for interpretation is considerably broader.

If the goal of study is pure intellectual thirst, I might suggest that Literature provides a wider selection of elixirs. On the other hand, if the mind hungers for quantifiable limits rather than nuanced gradations of the human experience, Law would be more palatable.

Since the question is to decide which is more demanding intellectually, I would say that since the study of Law does not require the student to reflect upon the values and incentives of society and how these are formulated in law to the extent that Literature by its very existence demands this type of examination; Literature is the more intellectually demanding field.

flat head
June 8th, 2004, 06:14 AM
the subject in which you have the least interest will always be the most challenging...

June 8th, 2004, 11:09 PM
Why not both? :)