Science And Poetry (Routledge Classics)

Dr Mary Midgley

'Science and Poetry' is a much needed and clear investigation of why and how science has so powerfully shaped the way we understand ourselves, our behavior towards others and our place in the world. With her customary sharp insight and clear prose, renowned moral philosopher Mary Midgley shows how the roots of the problem lie in the fragmented atom-like picture of science we inherited from the 17th century. Breaking the world up into small parts and observing them in isolation may work in science, but she clearly spells out how this kind of approach can be disastrous when turned towards understanding ourselves, the environment and other people. Drawing on examples from the Gaia hypothesis to the recent debate over memes, Mary Midgley spells out the unfortunate legacy of this situation: misguided attempts to reduce mind to body, political and moral individualism, and a needless backlash against science. With its forceful argument that the arts and poetry can help us reconcile some of these problems, 'Science and Poetry' is essential reading for all those interested in philosophy and the relation between science and the arts.

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