Examine the Claim That It Is Possible to Attain Knowledge Despite Problems of Bias and Selection.

Topics: World War II, Bias, Scientific method Pages: 4 (1368 words) Published: June 2, 2012
Examine the claim that it is possible to attain knowledge despite problems of bias and selection. In this essay, I will examine whether it is possible to gain knowledge from different sources even with problems in today’s world such as bias and selection. In order to gain a better understanding of this topic, it is necessary to first define the terms "bias" and "selection" as stated in the title. The Oxford Dictionary defines bias as "prejudice in favour of or against one thing, person, or group compared with another, usually in a way considered to be unfair "; The same source defines selection as "the action or fact of carefully choosing someone or something as being the best or most suitable ". Another important keyword in this title is "knowledge", which can be defined as "facts, information, and skills acquired by a person through experience or education; the theoretical or practical understanding of a subject ". Bias and Selection both affect our knowledge in a very serious way, as they can lead us to gaining knowledge that can be one-sided or away from the truth. We all know that unbiased and non-selective knowledge is usually fairer, and can lead to us having a more independent point of view and being more objective. Nevertheless, it is hard in the modern world to attain absolutely unbiased knowledge, especially in the Areas of Knowledge that use language, such as Ethics, Religion and History. First, I will examine the problem of biased knowledge in a historical aspect. It is probably fair to say that nearly every historical event and its interpretation have been shaped by the bias and selectiveness of different people. This depends upon different factors such as Religion, Ethics and Culture, but we are also biased because of emotional, social and political involvement in any event. We don't only face this problem when gaining knowledge about historical events in the past but we also shape "our history", because we too, as a recorder of current events are...
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