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Earlier this month, Stony Brook announced plans to cut and condense several of their Humanities programs. We asked distinguished writers—professionals who have dedicated their lives to voicing thought—to weigh in on Stony Brook’s decision. They are poets, novelists, journalists, or a combination of both. Among them are two Pulitzer prizes, three Whiting Awards, three Guggenheim fellowships, and several other prestigious awards. Here’s what they had to say: “The future of this country is Latinx; for Stony Brook to cut these programs speaks to a profound shortsightedness and a cruel indifference to the communities the university purports to serve. Only someone with no knowledge of the past, present or future would consider these programs dispensable. And it is at precisely times like these, when Latinx communities everywhere in the nation are under attack by xenophobic politicians and nativist punks, that universities like Stony Brook should be championing the genius and centrality of…

“For me it begins with a scene, and I don’t know what it means. I get a vision, and then I start moving around on it and it grows in all directions,” Professor Charles Haddad said while he sat in his office on the fourth floor of Melville Library at Stony Brook University. His small room, right on the corner of the Journalism Department wing, held a desk with a brand new Mac desktop on top of it. Behind it on the wall hung a cork board, tacked to it a newspaper article about a previous novel he wrote. He has written several different novels, ranging from children’s chapter books to books that teach his students how to write well. But as of this summer, he finally published a book he had been working on for a very long time. Professor Haddad was working as a journalist all over the…