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A Humanist Science$
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Philip Selznick

Print publication date: 2008

Print ISBN-13: 9780804758628

Published to Stanford Scholarship Online: June 2013

DOI: 10.11126/stanford/9780804758628.001.0001

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The Humanist Tradition

The Humanist Tradition

(p.3) 1 The Humanist Tradition
A Humanist Science
Stanford University Press

This chapter highlights the principles that lead to “humanist science.” These principles are related to major themes in Western intellectual history: the ideas of Plato and Aristotle; Judeo-Christian beliefs; Renaissance art and learning; the Protestant Reformation; the Enlightenment project; nineteenth-century romanticism; historicism and existentialism; twentieth-century thought, especially in cultural anthropology; and the humanist naturalism of American pragmatism. The chapter notes that the three main components of the humanist tradition are a belief in and quest for objectively grounded moral truth about social and personal well-being; liberation from ignorance, superstition, and uncritical acceptance of custom and authority; and rejection of whatever threatens the wholeness and intrinsic worth of human persons.

Keywords:   Plato, Aristotle, humanist science, human worth, Protestant Reformation, Enlightenment

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