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Lecture 3

SOCI 100 Lecture Notes - Lecture 3: Global Warming, Food Security, AnthropocentrismPremium

Course Code
SOCI 100
Neil Guppy

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SOCI 100 Lecture 3 - Ways of Seeing
Humans have a tendency to focus on differences and split things into groups, which too often
leads to evaluation (ex: facial features, skin tone, etc.)
‘Myth’ of human exceptionalism:
- This consists of no judgment about ways of seeing, simply analysis
- Religious systems can be thought of as ways to structure our thoughts
- Defining myth here as a set of ideas (schemas)
- Myths are universal properties of human society; every society has a creation myth
- They exaggerate one way of seeing; domination of nature myth exaggerates the notion
that humans have power
BUT we don’t have to subscribe to human exceptionalism
Can have alternative way of thinking that doesn’t perpetuate the domination of
Buddhism stresses the achievement of enlightenment, but not human
exceptionalism because in that school of though, we could be reborn as
anything in our next life
The Sioux think of animals as different but equal
Role of Science:
- Here, science = a powerful authoritative system that organizes how we think (another
- Early people (scientists) were curious and wanted to understand their world. As they did
this, they realized they could control it, and later that they could modify it according to
their convenience
- In science, we think we understand the world, but then we realize something that makes
us modify our notions
- In science, we observe the world (using sensory empirical evidence), draw general
conclusions, and then verify then as much as possible
- Science is the primary way we interpret the world - without realizing that science is often
- Increasingly, the importance of the scientific rationale is growing
- We often believe things (such as the existence of quarks - subatomic particles) without
seeing them with our own eyes. This blind belief in the system problematizes the sense
of science being omniscient
- Science is defined as an instrument of society that provides pragmatic responses to the
market of humans
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