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Science, reason, knowledge, and wisdom: a critique of specialism

Maxwell, N; (1980) Science, reason, knowledge, and wisdom: a critique of specialism. Inquiry , 23 (1) 19 - 81. 10.1080/00201748008601891. Green open access

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Abstract

In this paper I argue for a kind of intellectual inquiry which has, as its basic aim, to help all of us to resolve rationally the most important problems that we encounter in our lives, problems that arise as we seek to discover and achieve that which is of value in life. Rational problem-solving involves articulating our problems, proposing and criticizing possible solutions. It also involves breaking problems up into subordinate problems, creating a tradition of specialized problem-solving - specialized scientific, academic inquiry, in other words. It is vital, however, that specialized academic problem-solving be subordinated to discussion of our more fundamental problems of living. At present specialized academic inquiry is dissociated from problems of living - the sin of specialism, which I criticize.

Type: Article
Title: Science, reason, knowledge, and wisdom: a critique of specialism
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
DOI: 10.1080/00201748008601891
Publisher version: http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/00201748008601891
Language: English
Additional information: This is an electronic version of an article published in Maxwell, N (1980) Science, reason, knowledge, and wisdom: a critique of specialism. Inquiry , 23 (1) 19 - 81. Inquiry is available online at http://www.tandfonline.com/openurl?genre=article&issn=0020-174X&date=1980&volume=23&issue=1&spage=19
Keywords: rational inquiry, rationality, rational problem solving, specialism, irrationality of specialism, specialization, fundamental problems
UCL classification: UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL BEAMS
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL BEAMS > Faculty of Maths and Physical Sciences
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL BEAMS > Faculty of Maths and Physical Sciences > Dept of Science and Technology Studies
URI: https://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/1348870
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