St Nicholas Day Sale! Save 20%-50% on books and literature guides through November 9!

Science and Art in Berry

It’s clearly bad for the sciences and the arts to be divided into “two cultures.” It is bad for scientists to be working without a sense of obligation to cultural tradition. It is bad for artists and scholars in the humanities to be working without a sense of obligation to the world beyond the artifacts of culture. It is bad for both of these cultures to be operating strictly according to “professional standards,” without local affection or community resonsibility, much less any vision of an eternal order to which we all are subordinate and under obligation. It is even worse that we are actually confronting, not just “two cultures,” but a whole ragbag of disciplines and professions, each with its own jargon more or less unintelligible to the others, and all saying to the rest of the world, “That is not my field.”

Wendell Berry: Reduction and Religion, in Life is a Miracle

If, as always, Berry is seeing into the nature of things, no curriculum developer can take these words lightly. What do they say about the way we order our instruction, which, in most schools, is patterned after the Progressive model, derived from extreme naturalism?

Does this give any clues about where we need to go?

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Related Articles