The arts are subjects that you study in school which have some artistic or social aspect, rather than being purely practical or job-related. If you major in English and minor in music, you're studying the arts.

University subjects and separate colleges — and often even the degrees they award — are sometimes divided into arts and sciences. The arts include things like dance and photography, but also subjects such as Latin or religion. Sciences include, obviously, science, but also more professional and occupational studies. The root of arts is the Latin ars, "art."

Definitions of arts
  1. noun
    studies intended to provide general knowledge and intellectual skills (rather than occupational or professional skills)
    “the college of arts and sciences”
    synonyms: humanistic discipline, humanities, liberal arts
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    revival of a classical style (in art or literature or architecture or music) but from a new perspective or with a new motivation
    classicalism, classicism
    a movement in literature and art during the 17th and 18th centuries in Europe that favored rationality and restraint and strict forms
    Romantic Movement, Romanticism
    a movement in literature and art during the late 18th and early 19th centuries that celebrated nature rather than civilization
    the discipline that studies the English language and literature
    the discipline that records and interprets past events involving human beings
    art history
    the academic discipline that studies the development of painting and sculpture
    the determination of the actual temporal sequence of past events
    beaux arts, fine arts
    the study and creation of visual works of art
    performing arts
    arts or skills that require public performance
    the scholarly knowledge of western cultures and languages and people
    Oriental Studies, Orientalism
    the scholarly knowledge of Asian cultures and languages and people
    the rational investigation of questions about existence and knowledge and ethics
    literary study
    the humanistic study of literature
    library science
    the study of the principles and practices of library administration
    linguistics, philology
    the humanistic study of language and literature
    the scholarly and scientific study of music
    the study of Chinese history and language and culture
    stemmatics, stemmatology
    the humanistic discipline that attempts to reconstruct the transmission of a text (especially a text in manuscript form) on the basis of relations between the various surviving manuscripts (sometimes using cladistic analysis)
    (Middle Ages) an introductory curriculum at a medieval university involving grammar and logic and rhetoric; considered to be a triple way to eloquence
    (Middle Ages) a higher division of the curriculum in a medieval university involving arithmetic and music and geometry and astronomy
    musical performance
    the act of performing music
    dance, dancing, saltation, terpsichore
    taking a series of rhythmical steps (and movements) in time to music
    acting, performing, playacting, playing
    the performance of a part or role in a drama
    creating a picture with paints
    carving, sculpture
    creating figures or designs in three dimensions
    the discipline dealing with the principles of design and construction and ornamentation of fine buildings
    the branch of art history that studies visual images and their symbolic meaning (especially in social or political terms)
    the determination of how long ago different languages evolved from a common source language
    ethics, moral philosophy
    the philosophical study of moral values and rules
    aetiology, etiology
    the philosophical study of causation
    aesthetics, esthetics
    (art) the branch of philosophy dealing with beauty and taste (emphasizing the evaluative criteria that are applied to art)
    the study of values and value judgments
    jurisprudence, law, legal philosophy
    the branch of philosophy concerned with the law and the principles that lead courts to make the decisions they do
    the philosophical study of being and knowing
    any formal system of reasoning that arrives at the truth by the exchange of logical arguments
    the branch of philosophy that analyzes inference
    the philosophical theory of knowledge
    lit, literature
    the humanistic study of a body of literature
    comparative literature
    study of literary works from different cultures (often in translation)
    lit crit, literary criticism
    the informed analysis and evaluation of literature
    study of poetic works
    study of the literary works of ancient Greece and Rome
    study of the technique and rules for using language effectively (especially in public speaking)
    the branch of philology that is devoted to the study of dialects
    the branch of linguistics that studies the lexical component of language
    transcendental philosophy, transcendentalism
    any system of philosophy emphasizing the intuitive and spiritual above the empirical and material
    type of:
    bailiwick, discipline, field, field of study, study, subject, subject area, subject field
    a branch of knowledge
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