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Maladies of Modernity: Scientism and the Deformation of Political Order. David Whitney. South Bend, IN: St. Augustine’s Press, 2019.
 
David Whitney’s Maladies of Modernity: Scientism and the Deformation of Political Order is a thoughtful, timely examination of the origins of scientism, and its continued impact on contemporary political science. Whitney traces the origins of scientism to the time of the emergence…

Maladies of Modernity: Scientism and the Deformation of Political Order. David Whitney. South Bend, IN: St. Augustine Press, 2019.
 
David Whitney’s excellent critique of what he calls scientism, a dogmatic application of the methods of natural science to social science, provides a high-brow diagnosis of the modern maladies that result from the “rhetorical power of science.”  Whitney traces the development of…

Beyond Scientism and Towards Political Community
Scruton and Walsh, through an examination of scientism in relation to the person, have argued for the irreplaceable dignity of the person. In contrast to the reductionist reconstitution of the person in scientism, Scruton and Walsh present the person as the center of the political community that must be understood through inter-personal conduct founded on…

Walsh and Scientism

The methodology of scientism described by Scruton in the preceding chapter points to the rejection of limitation for persons. Limitation, understood as the framework that binds persons to the natural order of existence of which they are a part, is reformulated in the scientistic framework as a hurdle to overcome in the pursuit of the understanding of reality.…

The Person and Scientism
The potential for human beings to achieve political success, as defined by the formation and maintenance of prosperous communities, can only be fulfilled if individuals understand the importance of the person in politics. Recognition of the person necessitates the understanding of the self; one perceives others as persons once he/she first understands oneself as a person.…

The interplay between politics and science is certainly not a new phenomenon, but astonishing scientific advances in medicine and technology during the 20th century, and into the first two decades of the 21st, have forced us to reconsider that relationship.  While those advances led to unprecedented wealth and accumulation of material comforts, man’s increased control over nature also meant that…

Alasdair Macintyre, Charles Taylor, and the Demise of Naturalism. Review of Jason Blakely. Notre Dame University Press, 2016.
 
Jason Blakely’s Alasdair Macintyre, Charles Taylor, and the Demise of Naturalism has as its topic the negative impact the natural sciences have had on both political theory and the social sciences. Its purpose is to give us a way out of this “scientism,”…

The debate about scientism (also referred to as positivism or scientific reductionism) is an argument over the validity of applying the methods of the natural sciences to the social sciences. The desire of the positivist to purge the social sciences of its subjective element reveals his or her assumptions that reality consists only of immanent existence and that knowledge only…

The loss of the concrete is substantially a spiritual disease. With the thinning out of faith into a reverential attitude toward symbols, the meaning of the symbols themselves is thinned out to propositions the truth of which has to be demonstrated by rea­son. As a residuum of reality there remains only the structure and content of consciousness, that is, of…