Art And Science Which One Is More

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Art And Science: Which One Is More Righteous? Essay, Research Paper Art and Science: Which one is More Righteous?Time after time, society has placed stereotypes on different personas. One common stereotype involves the scientist and the artist. Scientists and artists have been labeled extreme opposites in their pursuits of truth and understanding. The scientist is viewed as being rational, objective, and conventional while the artist is viewed as being impetuous, subjective, and creative. Although some truth exists in the preceding descriptions, the scientist and artist really are not as different as they may seem. Science and art often send the perceiver the same message. The scientist and the artist are both trying to describe the same world; however, they go about it in

different ways. Through the definitions, intentions, and interpretations of science and art, it becomes obvious that parallels and differences between the scientist and artist exist.To begin, science is an organized body of conceptual knowledge. The contemporary American philosopher Wilfrid Sellars has characterized the two ways one views the world as the manifest image and the scientific image. The manifest image consists of the “world of ordinary experience, which includes such everyday middle-sized objects as tables and chairs, plus all the qualities one perceives as belonging to these objects, including color, smell, and taste” (Olen-375). Objects in the manifest image also include the arts. The scientific image consists of the “world of micro-theoretical

entities-objects that cannot be observed, but are posited by the scientist. It is a world of molecules and their components-atoms, electrons, protons, and quarks” (Olen-361). In the scientific image, tables and chairs are viewed as clouds of unobservable particles. As described by the scientist, they are different from the way the human experiences them. Most important, they are described quantitatively. The qualities they have are measurable ones: size, shape, mass, velocity, energy, force, and so on. When looking at this list, one may see that many of the qualities of the manifest image survive in the scientific one. Others, however, do not survive. Color, warmth, taste, and smell, for example, do not survive, though they do have replacements in the scientific image. For

instance, color is replaced by frequency of light waves. “Instead of saying that an object is blue, the scientist says that it reflects light waves of a certain frequency in certain conditions. Similarly, warmth is replaced by mean kinetic molecular energy, a quantity that objects have due to the motion of their molecules” (Olen-362). In truth, science is not the polar opposite of art; it only explains what exists in a different manner.Subsequently, art concentrates more on an intuition rather than a conceptual knowledge. “We have no art,” say the people of Bali. “We do everything as well as possible” (Abel-249). Until the Renaissance, activities such as sculpting, painting, and architecture were usually allied with carpentry and building. The term “aesthetics”

wasn’t even contrived until the eighteenth century. “Ancient Greece had no art in today’s sense (the Greek techne, usually translated as “art,” is closer to “skill” or “craft”), nor did ancient Egypt, nor did medieval Europe” (Abel-249). Whatever one may define art to be, it will always convey information without striving for or attaining the rigor of science. “Thou shalt not commit a social science!” says W. H. Auden. “Art enhances human experience by its hints at the ineffable, by the interplay of multiple meanings, by suggestive overtones, allusions, and atmosphere. The meanings ‘leak through’ so to speak” (Abel-255). Art always has a capacity for a greater meaning; thus, the greater the latitude left to the reader, the richer the meaning. One