Shelton, Fr. Charles, SJ
Regis College Senior Honors Program
Thesis - Open Access
Number of Pages
Through "Falling a house of cards: Rediscovering a humanist language in an age of neuroreduction," I argue that the language games specific to both neuroscience research and psychological treatment have becoming nonsensically intertwined, leading to commodification of treatment and patient abuse. I first examine the historical perspective of reductionism in science that enabled this linguistic blending, starting with Descartes and tracing its lineage to the modern times. I then expound on the nonsensical nature of modern neuroscience through a Wittgensteinian lens, and finally conclude with an examination of the social consequences produced by this linguistic confusion. The primary critique leveled is an argument coming from the field of mereology and entitled the mereological fallacy, where concepts of the whole creature are inappropriately and nonsensically attributed to specific parts of that creature. Ultimately, my thesis stands as an argument against the translational use of reductionism from research paradigms to treatment protocols.
Date of Award
© Daniel Ott
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Ott, Daniel A., "Falling a House of Cards: Rediscovering a Humanist Language in an Age of Neuroreduction" (2013). Student Publications. 598.