{[ promptMessage ]}

Bookmark it

{[ promptMessage ]}

3. Physical sciences and the natural sciences

3. Physical sciences and the natural sciences - Physical...

Info icon This preview shows pages 1–2. Sign up to view the full content.

View Full Document Right Arrow Icon
Physical sciences and the natural sciences There is a very distinct difference between how a physical scientist approaches science compared to a natural scientist, and for many years natural sciences were grouped under the derogatory term of the “descriptive sciences” because their work did not involve the type of “mathematics” associated with the physical sciences. Part of the problem is that natural scientists are working with a more variable world of living, animate objects compared to the uniformity of inanimate objects of the physical sciences. Physical, chemical and mechanical laws acted on these inanimate objects that all behaved the same. The natural world of course behaves according to the chemical and physical laws, and the chemical reactions and structural matter of the living world falls right in line. The difference between the two can be seen in how each group viewed the living world. Physicalists felt that all living things, with the exception of human, were machines and that it should be possible to reduce the machines into the various parts that made the whole machine work. The natural scientists, vitalists, didn’t agree and they felt that there was something special about living things compared to the inanimate world –they had a vital essence of life but beyond that they couldn’t explain what it was in a way that would satisfy the reductionist views of the physicalists. This divide between the two sciences would continue for literally hundreds of years until the underlying genetics of what that vital life force was discovered. Around 1930 the best of the two views of life were combined in the
Image of page 1

Info icon This preview has intentionally blurred sections. Sign up to view the full version.

View Full Document Right Arrow Icon
Image of page 2
This is the end of the preview. Sign up to access the rest of the document.

{[ snackBarMessage ]}

What students are saying

  • Left Quote Icon

    As a current student on this bumpy collegiate pathway, I stumbled upon Course Hero, where I can find study resources for nearly all my courses, get online help from tutors 24/7, and even share my old projects, papers, and lecture notes with other students.

    Student Picture

    Kiran Temple University Fox School of Business ‘17, Course Hero Intern

  • Left Quote Icon

    I cannot even describe how much Course Hero helped me this summer. It’s truly become something I can always rely on and help me. In the end, I was not only able to survive summer classes, but I was able to thrive thanks to Course Hero.

    Student Picture

    Dana University of Pennsylvania ‘17, Course Hero Intern

  • Left Quote Icon

    The ability to access any university’s resources through Course Hero proved invaluable in my case. I was behind on Tulane coursework and actually used UCLA’s materials to help me move forward and get everything together on time.

    Student Picture

    Jill Tulane University ‘16, Course Hero Intern