Novels and Scientific Psychology

Topics: Psychology, Reasoning, Mind Pages: 2 (488 words) Published: September 30, 2008
“We will always learn more about human life and human personality from novels than from scientific psychology."- Noam Chomsky. To what extent do you agree or disagree?

Everyday we, as human beings learn something new about ourselves. Especially through the advances in critical thinking and intellectual thought in psychology and literature. Chomsky's study's of language has affected the philosophy of language and mind, by influencing other intellectuals. We use knowledge and psychology to learn about human life and human personality. When approaching a statement concerning human psychology and literature, matters of human knowledge, human life and human personality arise. Both novels and scientific psychology allows us to understand and analyze human perception, emotion, reason and language. In a statement like this you have to look at this objectively, in what ways to we learn about humanity from scientific psychology and novels? Scientific psychology attempts to put a logical reasoning behind human personality/life, whereas novels are just illustrations and reflections of humanity.

In novels, a subjective way of human life and personality shows. More than one characters is usually shown in which they reveal emotions and thoughts and because of this novels give us a subjective way of human life making us feel empathy towards them .For example, in One Day in the Life of Ivan Denisovich, we see and experience the life of prisoners in a Russian camp through the eyes of Shukhov. Because we see a lot of detailed descriptions of Shukhov's perceptions, actions, and emotions, we feel like we are learning a lot about what it feels like to live as a prisoner. Even though some novels might be fiction, but in most cases they are still a reflection of real life and with analysing them the reader might get a clearer picture of human psychology than reading massive amounts of psychology books and essays. Writers have their own views on human life, which might not be very...
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