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Is There One Science, Western Science?

1484 words - 6 pages

1. Introduction
The period known as the Renaissance, brought with it a paradigm shift on perceptions of causality and to how phenomenon was viewed. It was this European Enlightenment that radically departed from the traditional religious metaphysical views of cause to one which relied on rationality and the empirical as the foundation of cause. This approach was more useful to practical everyday life than the traditional metaphysical way of thinking. The empirical way of explaining phenomena, events and observations expressed in quantitative measurement, offered more readily acceptable explanation of cause than the traditional metaphysical way of thinking employed up to this time. It was this new Western Europe empiricism with its accompanying technological advances such as inter alia, transport mediums and weaponry that facilitated the conquests and expansion of the West to the rest of the globe. This expansion was made possible due to the new intellectual principles of empirical observation and critical reasoning of this new Enlightenment era and nations and societies that did not conform to these new cognitive principles were viewed as intellectually backward. This accordingly led to the Western perceptions of African thought as being primitive and pre-logical as opposed to the modern Western manner of thought that was founded on reason and scientific empiricism, and therefore irrational. In this essay this viewpoint will investigated and the validity thereof evaluated in order to respond to the assignment question.
2. Background
Humanity has an entrenched desire for the attainment of knowledge. Wisdom can therefore not be the exclusive property of the any culture and for any grouping to claim exclusivity to such would be ludicrous and to deny anyone this right would consequently be denying other groups their right to be human (Okere, 2005: 25).
According to the Western schools of thought, science has its origins in the ancient Greece. This is an idea spread by most Western historians of science and other Western intellectuals. This view is however erroneous as science had its origin in Alexandria. The West’s technological knowledge was, contrary to popular belief, a legacy of the ancient Egypt, and it was from here that Greece absorbed its scientific knowledge (Keita, 2007: 157). The Egyptians had systematic knowledge of the laws of mechanics and this is supported by ancient Egyptian manuscripts in geometry and trigonometry. Alexandria was the setting from where scientific ideas of the ancient Egyptian were transmitted (Ibid: 158). It should further be noted that the Egyptians engaged in systematic scientific study of the stars before the Greeks.
The indispensable feature of that what we call science, is the analysis of the arrangements of the natural world with the objective of finding confirmable explanations. The trademark of scientific investigation is careful scrutiny articulated in objective linguistic terminology and accurate...

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