Wednesday, September 13, 2017

HIstory Unit Closer

“Some areas of knowledge seek to describe the world, whereas others seek to transform it.” Explore this claim with reference to history and one other area of knowledge.

The claim here says knowledge can transform and describe the world. to try to explore this claim  we have to assume the definitions of these terms. When I think of transform in reference to the world I think of change and revolution. This makes me evaluate these knowledge as a way of changing the world. On the other hand we have knowledge as a way of describing the world. When I think I think of it as a tool. I feel description is a tool we use to understand or define things. In this blog we are going to try to understand knowledge in these ways.

When looking at history as an way of knowing it tends to fall more under the way of describing the world. Although it can be argued that history can transform the world, describing the world is what history seems to do more. to start evaluating the claim in reference I have to form an understanding of the purpose of history. History in my option is to give an understanding of what has appended in the past so that we can learn and understand how we got to where we are today. This is why describing fits the role of history well cause it defines our past. You can look on any moment in history and question yourself how does this contribute to world and it will end up in some way describing the world. For example we look at the Nazis is world war 2 and we see injustice and terror. In history we studied how these cruel actions of the Nazis impacted millions of lives. History seeks to give us a view of Hitler's campaign so we can better understand what came before us. That way we will not see repeats of  the mistakes that came before us. While history is used to described for analyze and learning purposes, it also can be used to describe the past in a way that is a characteristic. It plays into the theme that it is the things we do who makes who we are or defines us. The Nazis and world war 2 are a part of the world that defines it. This also plays into how history can be used to seek to transform the world. Because in a way world war 2 did transform the world during the 20th century. My only problem with the claim is that history focusses on events that have already happened. world war 2 had many impacts that may have influenced the transforming of the world, but I do not feel that history seeks to transform it. This plays back into analyzing the claim. We have to make an assumption about how the author intended for the word seek to be used. I do no think that history seeks to change or revolutionize the world, but it does seek to describe it. If we did not have history we could not understand or have a definition of the world. This reminds me of the game we played in Tok called Prove that it happened. It still bothers me that the boys team didn't win because we couldn't prove with viable evidence that our school was founded in 1886. Its a fact we know because it just has been told since then, and it gives a good example how hard it would be to describe the past if we don't have a sufficient amount of history on it. It shows the important of having knowledge like history to describe our past so that we can know it. Also it is amazing to see that the past is a thing that is open to be described, but depending on who does the describing develops our opinion of it. For example we today see the Nazis as villains because of how their actions were betrayed. Not that I doubt that or anything, but we look at other examples like the Mau Mau. This brings up questions to how effective our system of describing history is. History is not always a clear cut definition like the dictionary.  

An other area of knowledge that is interesting to look at from this stand point is natural sciences. For me at least I do not see as clear cut of a barrier for whether it seeks to describes the world or transforms it. My initial thought is that it would seek to transform the world, because of how natural sciences are what help us innovate and revolutionize our technology and medicine. At the same time I think about it and the basis of the natural sciences is unravel the mysteries and describe the world around us. This is where I run into a problem with the way I think of the claim. The best way for me to evaluate this is to break the natural sciences into two part. There is one branch which is like the basis of them. This includes what we learn in school typically. This is usually the physics, chemistry, and biology. This portion of the natural sciences mostly seeks to describe the world. For example you ca look much of the stuff we learn in school with Isaac Newton and the principles of gravitations force, and Albert Einstein space time theories, even photosynthesis. All of these seek to help us understand the world around us by describing the way things happen and work. The other branch would have to be more of an implied natural sciences. This would be more of what the people in the natural science fields work on everyday. Such as applying these sciences we learn in school to seek breakthroughs and discoveries in able to change and innovate our world. For example this may be a bio chemist in a lab trying to discovery the cure for cancer or a physics trying to discovery a new energy source through nuclear fusion. These types of discoveries can change and transform the world. The natural sciences seek both to describe and transform the world. It is only one of the areas of knowledge that seem to challenge this claim in the created binary of transform and described.

In my opinion this claim is not very reliable, because as I think about many of the areas of knowledge. Almost all of them except for history seem to have implications in both transforming and describing the world. I see it mostly in Describing. I feel that all knowledge is some what way has a purpose of the describing the world. My opinion of knowledge is to help me understand things, and like I said description is a tool used to understand and comprehend.

Sunday, January 29, 2017

Guest speaker from West Georgia

We had a guest speaker in Theory of Knowledge class on Friday. Mr. is a phycology professor at West Georgia. When he came to speak to us I was surprised  that he didn't speak much on phycology as a human science but more about his life and past experiences. This was quite interesting and reflected the human sciences we are talking about in class. He also gave us a view into another culture that did not know much about except for stereotypes and media.

When he told us about his past he helped explain Asia with many maps. this immediately made me think of geography. I found countries very fascinating because I never knew how they were formed. I never would have thought that Russian gerrymandering was why the countries borders are the way they are. I did not realize how much politics were going on in the this part of the world.

Also Mr. helped give me a better understanding of the culture. When he described his time in Uzbakistan I was quite amazed. First of all the didn't know that stan meant land of. Also I didn't realize how much that countries like Uzbakistan were influenced by
Russia. I remember him talking about how they always drank like the Russians. Also the counties had their own separate cultures that came out of the gerrymandering. Especially with variety of languages that developed out of these countries. Its amazing for a relatively small area to have so many languages that originated from so many different places. I was having trouble keeping up with all of the languages. I remember there being Persian and Russian and some others I couldn't pronounce. I learned a lot about this foreign land that I have gained a new found respect for the middle east.

Another thing Mr.  taught me was how those countries had things in common with the west. The thing that stood out most to me was how they have snickers. I would have never thought that the middle east has snacks like us. That just goes to show you how ignorant I am. He also introduced me to a how economy in middle east is like western. I know it is a given that all economies have inflation, but I never saw it in action. He brought in money and talked about how the currency's value changed while he was there.  I found it interesting to meet someone to experience inflation like that.

The main things I took away from Mr. presentation was how interesting other places around can be. How they can have many similarities with us. Also how they can be very different and unique. Also I got to view his presentation from a human science view and look at the geography, economics, and anthropology going on in this middle east area. Overall I enjoyed Mr. presentation very much.