STEM, Scientism, and the Decline of the Humanities – my latest on Splice Today

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One response to “STEM, Scientism, and the Decline of the Humanities – my latest on Splice Today

  • alawrenceg

    As someone who always had too many interests, and an unfortunate indecisiveness (ok, laziness) that inhibited me from excelling in any one thing, I find myself with a reasonable foundation in both scientific / “analytical” fields (including finance), but also the creative and political disciplines of the heart, if you will, and what I observe is that those who consider themselves to be “of science”, are not particularly logical or even scientific. They frequently rely on what “experts” say, they trust, they rely on faith. They assume that if something isn’t proven true then it means it was proven false, which isn’t scientific at all, and they accept without caveat what for-profit companies (like pharmaceuticals) tell them is scientific with no regard for the credibility issues inherent in a conflict of interest. Students of science can run calculations, but, like you say, where is the logic that comes from being a thinker? Where is the understanding of the human condition, the contemplation of infinite possibility? It is important not just to understand that there is global warming, for example, but why it’s bad, the effect on people and culture, if we are to really care, not to mention the benefits to character of living without something that we might should sacrifice. We shouldn’t need to prove everything, nor should we ignore what isn’t proven, because we can understand that one thing follows logically from another – or why things matter. That comes from humanities. Even the best scientists lead with the heart. In the words of Albert Einstein “Imagination is more important than knowledge.”


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