The major arguments that can be found within the Ms Denise hall’s letter are:
According to the argument 1, science is not the only or absolute way for the development of the educated society. Over the years, it has been found that the most of the newspapers and the most of the technical thoughts claimed that it is very much necessary to have scientific knowledge for the development of an educated society. However, it has been found that the science do not have the explanation for all the events that happens within the universe. It is quite evident that science does not have the ability to describe the natural events. Therefore, the argument 1 made on the letter is quite evident. Furthermore, the standardization can be achieved through stating that a healthy society is very much necessary to set up a science benchmarking.
In the argument 2, it has been claimed that though the modern science claims that it provides the final explanation to the each events happened within the universe. However, it is very much evident that the science failed to explain the events like the contraction and the expansion of the universe with precisions. On this scenario, it has been seen that science has explained these phenomenon with assumptions and historical evidences Bruner (2014). Therefore, it is very much evident that science does not have the explanation for all. Therefore, standardization can be framed through stating that not all the phenomenon of the nature is possible to describe by science.
According to argument 3, our trust and the conventional social education system provides the knowledge about the values and meaning of life. Therefore, to develop a educated society it is very necessary to infuse the value and meaning of the life through trusting the basic thoughts of the society. However, Eric Abets contradicted this argument through stating that the basic knowledge of science is the key for the development of the educated society. Eric Abets cited the example of the increasing abortion and breast cancer on this issue Pedersen (2012). This contradictory evident is very strong and therefore, the argument 3 could be standardised through stating that both the science and the conventional knowledge is required to develop an educated society.
Ethics is one of the most important aspects for the development of a society. Through the argument 4, it has been expressed that it is the inability of the science that it fails to explain the concept of ethics to the society. However, Eric Abets argued that the basic knowledge about the science would provide the judgemental power to the society on different issues like GM crops, smoking, alcohol etc (The Sydney Morning Herald, 2014). This contradiction is quite logical. Therefore, the argument 4 can be furthermore standardised through stating that for the development and establishment of the societal ethical points both the science and the conventional thoughts are required.
Wisdom and the knowledge are very much interrelated to each other (Theunissen,2014). Through the argument 5, it has been explained that it is well known that the knowledge can only be acquired through the practice of wisdom. It directly counters the thoughts of science through questioning its capacity. On this argument, it has been told, “Science is a small component of human intellectual”. It has been quite evident that in the establishment of the societal and the global brotherhood it requires wisdom not the atomic powers. Therefore, considering the present global and the internal societal facts it is quite significant that the society needs knowledge and wisdom rather than the science.
Through the argument 6 the action of the political leaders were supported in downplaying the science issue. It has been stated that the science can only provide solutions to the practical issue. However, while catering with the bigger fundamental and societal issues it requires the involvement of the humanity and the wisdom rather than scientific contribution. However, in the incidents like Ebola it has been observed that the fundamental thoughts restricted the human involvement. However, science allowed the human access with optimum protection and this enabled the greater society to control this disease to some extent (Dean, 2006). Therefore, a further standardization on the statement 6 can be made through stating that for the greater benefit of the society a union of science and wisdom is required.
Statistical generalization provides statistical evidence either for the statement or against the statement. Therefore, according to The Sydney Morning Herald (2014) the popularity of the science education has been decreased by 40% over the years. This significantly points out the decreasing interest on science especially from the Australian youth. The letter from Ms hall very aggressively points out the limitation of the science and it says that the practice of the wisdom is much required than the practice of science.
According to Philip Kitcher both the conventional and the scientific knowledge is very much required for the betterment of the society (Kitcher, 2012). According to him, the evolution of society has been transferred from the conventional thoughts to the scientific thoughts. This transformation has changed the dimension of the learning. The modern society demands the domain specific knowledge that is only possible through the practice of science.
The major strength of the argument 1 is that it is very much true that only the knowledge will not help to develop an educated society. The main reason behind this is that according to (Gregory, 2010) knowledge of science only helps to become well-informed society. However, it is the basic knowledge of the humanity that will help to develop a well-educated society.
The major weakness of this argument is that it completely denies the contribution of science. It is very evident from some of the facts that the conventional social thoughts sometimes failed to save the human life but science saved human life at that time. Therefore, downplaying the contribution of science could lead to a societal myopia within the society.
The major strength of this argument is that it has very successfully pointed out the limitations of the science. Over the years, it has been seen that science has claimed that it has the ultimate answer but it has significantly failed to provide clarification on the natural issues (Agassi, 2014). Science tried to provide answers of these situations through complex analysis through taking help from the conventional explanations. Therefore, it is evident that science is not self sufficient to explain everything.
The weakness of this statement is the debate between science V/s philosophy is a long-lived debate and the main theme of the debate is what has been illustrated through this statement. Therefore, this statement does not state anything else. It could be consider as the fallacies.
The main strength of this statement is that improvises the source of the core thoughts and the trust on the almighty. According to Skyrms (2014) the formation of the society and the societal bonding has been developed through keeping trust upon the almighty and the meaning of the life has been derived from this belief. This belief works as a invisible bonding to keep the society into a particular form.
The weakness of this argument is that through dividing the source of core belief and knowledge it somewhere influences the communal thoughts within the society.
The strength of this statement is that it is very much evident that the human emotions and the human beliefs have developed a code of ethics that says to develop the brotherhood among the societies for the betterment of the individual and the society. This development of ethics is completely driven by the core beliefs and human emotions (Heath, 2014). Therefore, the statement is very much valid in any societal context. It also has shown the limitation of science on the human behavioural factors.
The weakness of this argument is that it shows biasness against science. It is true that science do not have any explanation on the ethics but the modern science through the man watching study has successfully explained couple of ethical codes.
It is very much evident that the practice of wisdom has major contribution in the development of knowledge. The ancient wisdom has given the platform for the enrichment of the knowledge through the synthesis on the wisdom. This argument clearly defines the barrier of science for the development of societal knowledge (White, 2014).
The main weakness of this argument is that it only focuses on the societal knowledge development. It does not provide focuses to the other aspects of the knowledge like the medical knowledge and other functional knowledge. Considering this single focused argument it can be said that it is very much of a casual statement.
The major strength of this argument is that it provides a direction to the political leaders about the advancement of the society.
The main weakness of this statement is that it promotes the negative sense on the science education. This will affect the societal development adversely in the longer run.
According to Agassi (2014) if the Australian leaders and the business houses downplay the science and the science-education, it will create a social chaos within a short time. This will not only affect the growth of the Australian society but also will damage the growth of the country especially in the areas like medical, manufacturing etc. However, it is very much supportable that the controllable scientific application needs to be applied for the betterment of the society.
On this segment, the political and the business houses needs to be apply science for the betterment of the larger society. In present scenario, it has been seen that some of the companies and some of the agencies claims something that is vague and false. Therefore, the science education will help to reduce the growth of this kind of activities.
The particular letter says about the effectiveness of the wisdom, knowledge and ethics. On this three aspects the writer has raised the question about the capacity of the science through deliberately pointing out some of the gray areas of science. According to Gregory (2010) to become an educated society both knowledge and logic is very much required. White (2014) stated that the only the moral and ethical development will never be able to develop an educated society. The main reason behind this is that only the ethical and the synthesis of the wisdom cannot develop the nature of the critical thinking. The nature of critical thinking only can be developed through the practice of science. Therefore, from the public point of view the negative biasness on the science will reduce the critical thinking process of the society.
According to Dean (2006) the science should be applied though the utilitarianism approach. The main reason for this is that it will help to develop a society through its good practices because science is a logical cause effect process. On the other hand, the concept of Social Darwinism improvises the “Survival of the fittest” and the creation of wealth. However, the creation of wealth creates discrimination within the society and this will create a misbalance within the society. This misbalance in future could lead to the destruction of the social bonding.
Throughout the study, it has been seen that the main motto of the letter is to promote the gray side of the science. This letter also appreciated the downplaying on the science from the political leaders. However, it is highly recommended that not to downplay the science and the science education within the society. Moreover, the Australian political leaders need to provide more stress on the science education. In the case of Ebola in South Africa, the South African community failed to even create an initial barrier only because of lower awareness about handing of the issue. This awareness only can be provided by the scientific education.
On the other hand, it is also very highly recommended that a well structured social education road map needs to be developed that will contain both the synthesis of the wisdom and the practice of the science. The wisdom will provide the knowledge about the humanity and the values of life. On the other hand, science will help the society to analyze the events through the logical process. Moreover, the basic knowledge of science will help the society to differentiate between the truth and the false claims.
The other recommendation is that while describing the need and the content of the meaning of life, values and ethics of life and society it is better not to bring the churches, mosques affront. Bringing this affront may influence the communal thoughts within the system. The growth of the communal through is very dangerous for the society and the country.
On the other hand, it is recommended that to keep the science and conventional learning separate from each other. Science v/s religious thoughts it is a long haul debate and it has created may disparities within the society. Therefore, to maintain the societal harmony it is better not to mix these two aspects.
Dean, K. (2006). Realism, philosophy and social science. Basingstoke [England]: Palgrave Macmillan.
Skyrms, B. (2014). Social dynamics. Oxford: Oxford University Press.
Agassi, J. (2014). “Introducing Philosophy of Social Science.”, Philosophy of the Social Sciences, 44(4), pp.536-550.
Bruner, J. (2014). “Diversity, tolerance, and the social contract.”, Politics, Philosophy & Economics. 12(6), pp.23-30.
Gregory, J. (2010). “The political philosophy of Walzer's social criticism.”, Philosophy & Social Criticism, 36(9), pp.1093-1111.
Heath, J. (2014). “Rebooting discourse ethics.”, Philosophy & Social Criticism, 40(9), pp.829-866.
Pedersen, J. (2012). “Social philosophy: A reconstructive or deconstructive discipline?.”, Philosophy & Social Criticism, 38(6), pp.619-643.
Theunissen, M. (2014). “The Idea of Philosophy and Its Relation to Social Science.”, Philosophy of the Social Sciences, 44(2), pp.151-178.
White, S. (2014). “Does Critical Theory need strong foundations?.”,Philosophy & Social Criticism. 2(5),pp.12-16.
Kitcher, P. (2012). The Trouble With Scientism: Underrate The Humanities and Arts at Your Own Peril. [online] The New Republic. Available at: https://www.newrepublic.com/article/books-and-arts/magazine/103086/scientism-humanities-knowledge-theory-everything-arts-science [Accessed 9 Jan. 2015].
The Sydney Morning Herald, (2014). Science the benchmark of an educated society. [online] Available at: https://www.smh.com.au/comment/smh-editorial/science-the-benchmark-of-an-educated-society-20141019-118cwl.html [Accessed 9 Jan. 2015].
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