• Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

we will always learn more about human life and human personality from novels than from scientific psychology. (Noam Chomsky) To what extent would you agree?

Extracts from this document...

Introduction

Question 2 "...we will always learn more about human life and human personality from novels than from scientific psychology." (Noam Chomsky) To what extent would you agree? Good friends Charis and Tu Bao are in a cafe near school one Friday afternoon. Charis : Tu Bao, I've been thinking for some time now, since we're both reading the same novel for English literature, don't you think we learn more about the human life and personality through them? In my opinion, literature basically presents a complete picture of human nature, especially in the nature of the characters in the book. I've read an article about a naturalist author named Emile Zola who explained in the beginning of his book, Th�r�se Raquin, that his aim was to observe and examine how people of different personalities react to each other1. But, if learning about humans through novels is enough, why is there a subject created for it? You know... Scientific Psychology. Tu Bao : Well, personally, to a certain extent, the best source of information about human nature is actual humans and literature being written by a human might just be considered as the best medium for us to learn about humans. ...read more.

Middle

This helps me to gain knowledge of his behaviour and feelings, leading me to his personality which we established earlier on that they are all closely related to one another. Tu Bao : But in that case, subjectivity did not restrain your knowledge of the main character's personality even as your emotional stance altered and grew due to sympathetic reason towards him, right? Charis : Right. Tu Bao : But let's think about this. Even if the subjectivity of novels does not impair the precision of how you learn about human personality and life from, but from a scientific view, the knowledge that you gained on the characters' personalities can be flawed as it may not be applicable to the human race as a whole. Charis : Because it's written by the author from his perception. Tu Bao : Exactly. Charis : This is tricky. But see, referring back to Regeneration, the main character, Seigfried Sassoon does not automatically make us gain knowledge about the soldiers that are experiencing post-war effects in Craiglockgart as a whole. However, we are still able to gain the notion of culture through it. ...read more.

Conclusion

But, have you ever thought that this can only be accessed to is one is literate? Novels depend solely on written language to transfer knowledge, lowering its ability as a medium to gain more knowledge. Tu Bao : So, because of that, one has to rely on his or her experience to gain knowledge about the human personality and life. Charis : Yeah. Tu Bao : You know, if Chomsky did not use the word "scientific" in his quote, this discussion would have been entirely different. This is because psychology would then have a wider scale and be able to cover much more personality aspects and still retain some of its accuracy. Charis : But, oh well, after having this conversation, we still cannot decide which is more reliable than the other. Tu Bao : That's because both novels and scientific psychology are possible mediums for us to gain knowledge of human life and human personality. So, we cannot be certain as there are no definitive answers which are the right sources for us to do that. Charis : Alright. Let's leave this before I become even more confused. Tu Bao : *laughs* Alright. (1477 words) 1 http://science.jrank.org/pages/10431/Naturalism-in-Art-Literature-Father-Naturalism.html ?? ?? ?? ?? 6th of October 2010 Human Sciences by Charis Ow ...read more.

The above preview is unformatted text

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our International Baccalaureate Theory of Knowledge section.

Found what you're looking for?

  • Start learning 29% faster today
  • 150,000+ documents available
  • Just £6.99 a month

Not the one? Search for your essay title...
  • Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

See related essaysSee related essays

Related International Baccalaureate Theory of Knowledge essays

  1. Seek simplicity and distrust it. (Alfred North Whitehead). Is this always a good advice ...

    Na�ve simplicity, however, helps us to gain a basic understanding of a topic. In this stage, information seems straight forward and simple. It is crucial for us, in our position as a knower, to take into account that this view can only reflect a highly simplified picture of reality and

  2. We will always learn more about human life and human personality from novels than ...

    Novelists are clearly interested in ideas as well as emotions. In fact, they often present an emotional character in order to explore an idea or a theory about why we fell what we feel or why we do what we do.

  1. "...we will always learn more about human life and human personality from novels than ...

    Personality can therefore be termed as the emotional patterns of an individual, and their behavioural consequences. In addition, it is unclear how personality develops. Either human personality is set from birth, as part of evolutionary behaviour patterns that ensure survival, or it is shaped by the environment.

  2. Historical orthodoxy's subjectivity and change

    The theories therefore change to suit the new evidence, and this erodes past claims and theories in an effort to fit the evidence with a new explanation or theory and adapts them to include not only the orthodox and biased sentiments but also the heretic and abstract points of view.

  1. TOK summer assignment - Art Questions. Experiencing art, artists reputations and "what is ...

    The paintings were flooding with memories of the WW2 time with many paintings describing the life during the war and the great depression. Many of the paintings were abstract too, showing the more thought-provoking side of art. Rooms 111 and 112 showed a completely different perspective than the previous room.

  2. The need to belong marks us as human and it is such connections that ...

    As the scene commences, the tracking slow motion camera speed where Scott breaks away improvising non-federation steps at the Waratah State Championships accentuates the movement and freedom Scott demands. The open framing here, as Scott dances out of frame coveys the sense of anarchy through juxtaposition with the closed framing

  1. The Language Instinct - theories of Pinker and Chomsky

    Pinker uses the phrase structure rules and diagrams to support his claim. He demonstrates how limiting the traditional grammatical categories are; he even describes verbs as little despots. Pinker also offers that ?grammar offers a clear refutation of the empiricist doctrine that there is nothing in the mind that was

  2. Describe the development of a scientific theory, highlighting the process involved. Differentiate between ...

    The member of the specie that does not have any advantage will probably die out. For Darwin the fittest member was not necessarily the strongest but the ones which were most fit to survive and reproduce. He believed that was sexual reproduction that leads to variations in specie.

  • Over 160,000 pieces
    of student written work
  • Annotated by
    experienced teachers
  • Ideas and feedback to
    improve your own work