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Introduction and Week 1 reactions

ib4walrus's picture

I'm a little late to the game but I'm Toan and am a freshman at Haverford.  I don't really have any plans on a major yet but I've always had an inclination towards the sciences especially biology and chemistry.  However, I do enjoy english and other humanities courses.  What sparked my interest for this class was the fact that it was cross-listed between english and biology.  I wanted to see how traditional biology courses with clear-cut and (mostly) definite procedures/answers/methods could be intertwined with the creativity and free-spirited form of english literature (not saying that the sciences lack creativity).  Additionally, evolution as a topic intrigues me and I have yet to apply it to literature.  I look forward to seeing how compatible the two subjects are by taking this course.  

From the lecture on Thursday it has opened up a new perspective for me.  The traditional scientific method and scientific thoughts have been ingrained in me as the only way to thinking (in the sciences).  The empirical method of scientific explanation seemed foolish (especially after reading Kant's response to Hume).  However, I look forward to revisiting this method and seeing how stories can be formed in evolution.  When asked by Professor Grobstein "Why are we here?", I couldn't seem to articulate a definite answer.  There are simply too many variables to take into consideration and the time frame of the answer couldn't be defined.  Should we start with the Big Bang and work our way through the totality of history?  Or should we give a much more current answer of class starts at 2:15 pm and is held in English House?  The inability to answer reflects what I believe that this new empirical perspective will be about.  That there won't be a definite answer but rather the most probable answer for explanations.  Just as my previous english teacher has told me, "literature is never truly finished" never are our lives and so a definitive "truth" from science might not actually exist...


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