[ExI] Natasha's brand new doctorate

Stefano Vaj stefano.vaj at gmail.com
Sat Jul 14 11:26:26 UTC 2012

On 14 July 2012 02:24, spike <spike66 at att.net> wrote:

> I disagree so much Stefano.  The more active verb “defend” is the right
> word, for it is much more wonderfully descriptive of the exhausting and
> rigorous process of getting the highly esteemed doctoral degree.

I was not being ironic, I fully agree. This is or should be the right word,
and it used to be the word in Bologna and Padua when  the first
universities were established. Being a "doctor" of something literally
involved having a thesis (at that time, it was just law or medicine) and
defending them successful from the challenge of your (future) peers, who
then were welcoming you in their ranks.

The lexical change in Italy reflects the fact that process is currently
perceived as too "adversarial", something which is pretty stupid.

Conversely, while research doctorates obviously exist, we do not have the
bachelor/bacellier/lizenz-master/maitrise/magister-doctor system, so that
after high school one engages in a four-five (six only for medicine)
course, you present a dissertation, and then you are called a doctor

Strangely enough, in the Italian-Spanish system, "master" courses are
undertaken by people who are already doctors! An equivalent exists however
for jurists in the US, where law being a postgraduate thing, most law
schools make you not an LLB, but a JD, so that you get your LLM after your
JD degree, like in Italy,

Stefano Vaj
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