Saturday, May 19, 2012

Big History

Physicist Murray Gell-Mann: “We live in an age of increasing specialization…Humanity keeps learning more about each field of study; and as every specialty grows, it tends to split into subspecialties. However, there is also a growing need for specialization to be supplemented by integration. The reason is that no complex, nonlinear system can be adequately described by dividing it up into subsystems…In academic life, in bureaucracies, and elsewhere, the task of integration is insufficiently respected.” “Narrative is the chief literary form that tries to find meaning in an overwhelmingly crowded and disordered chronological reality.” -William Cronon