Lennard Davis on Science and the Humanities

Lennard Davis’s three-part reply to Dan Agin’s book review of Obsession outlines a powerful way in which the humanities can be of use to ongoing scientific inquiry. Dan Agin’s reply that “all [Davis’s] caveats are already well known to anyone who does research on the brain and its dysfunctions” seems true to me, as well. Unfortunately, those caveats are not well known to regulators, insurance companies, educators, journalists, consumers, patients, and many practicing physicians. Perhaps the audience for humanities scholarship on science should not be scientists themselves–or even the medical community–but the policy makers who shape funding priorities and develop regulatory structures. I suspect Davis does not agree with this last point, but until humanities scholars find ways to address this other audience, they will continue to be accused of thinking scientists are “idiots.”

Read the Article at HuffingtonPost

Jay Clayton

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~ by Jay Clayton on January 30, 2009.

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