The Value of Science in a Disenchanted Age: Bridging the Fact/Value Dichotomy
Weber the scientist is aware of the fact that his work is contributing to the ongoing progress of science. While contribution to the progress of science has recognizable technical significance, Weber asks the broader question of the relationship of the progress of science to a “meaningful vocation.” In posing the question in these terms, he is interested in exploring the vocation of science as it relates to the “total life of humanity,” not just as it relates to him as an individual. Weber wants to know if pursuing scientific inquiry can go beyond merely technical and practical contributions to human society and make a more meaningful contribution to the total life of humanity.
Has “progress” as such a recognizable meaning that goes beyond the technical, so that to serve it is a meaningful vocation? … To raise this question is to ask for the vocation of science within the total life of humanity. What is the value of science? (SV, 140)
KeywordsScientific Analysis Empirical Science Theoretical Rationalization Total Life Practical Rationalization
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