Beyond Global Studies. An Introductory Lecture into a Big History Course
Global studies can be made not only with respect to the humans who inhabit the Earth, they can well be done with respect to biological and abiotic systems of our planet. Such an approach opens wide horizons for the modern university education as it helps to form a global view of various processes. However, we can also ask ourselves whether the limits of our studies can be moved further. Would not it be useful for the students to understand the evolution of our planet within the context of the evolution of our Universe? The need to see this process of development holistically, in its origins and growing complexity, is fundamental to what drives not only science but the human imagination. This shared vision of the grand narrative is one of the most effective ways to conceptualize and integrate our growing knowledge of the Universe, society, and human thought. Note that the respective discipline already exists and it has been developing quite successfully for more than three decades; it is denotes as Big History.