The Culture of Science - Joseph Woelfel
Building on the heritage of their predecessors in Asia Minor, North Africa and the Indus Valley, the Ionian Greeks were the first Western scientists, beginning with Thales in the sixth century BCE. They understood the comparative method of measurement, and knew the mathematical relationships among different musical tones. They saw the sun, not the earth, as the center of the solar system. They understood the world to be composed of atoms, and knew the method of approximations that underlie the calculus. They made measurements of the size of the earth, the moon and the sun, and had estimates of their mutual distances. But the growth of the Athenian philosophers, whose work was adopted by Christianity as its official philosophy, suppressed the Ionians, and science virtually vanished in the west until 1466, when Copernicus revived Aristarchus of Samos; idea that the sun was the center of the solar system. In spite of efforts by the Athenian/Christian culture to suppress it, the New Ionians method survived and flourished to become what we now call science.The study of human beings and their cognitive and cultural processes has remained the domain of the Athenian philosophers, although they call themselves social scientists. Progress has been slow, and, according to some, nonexistent. In this book, Joseph Woelfel, one of the leading proponents of the scientific study of human thought and behavior, argues that this lack of progress is due to the inadequacy of the underlying Athenian philosophy that pervades the social sciences, and shows how the scientific method of the Ionians can be brought to bear on human beings and their culture. His own innovative work has showed that human cognitive and cultural processes can indeed be studied with the same methods as physical phenomena with great success. After a review of all the Social Science literature commissioned by the U. S. Army, the Rand Corporation concluded: In many ways, Woelfel's theory was the closest that any social science approach came to providing the basis for an end-to-end engineering solution for planning, conducting, and assessing the impact of communications on attitudes and behaviors.