Humanist Discussion Group

Humanist Archives: March 5, 2021, 10:10 a.m. Humanist 34.258 - psychology of quantification

				                  Humanist Discussion Group, Vol. 34, No. 258.
        Department of Digital Humanities, University of Cologne
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        Date: 2021-03-04 09:45:32+00:00
        From: Hartmut Krech 
        Subject: Re: [Humanist] 34.257: the psychology of quantification?

Willard,

While not in direct reply to your question, I found the following short
piece by The New Yorker staff-writer Alec Wilkinson inspiring, detailing
what may 'count' as 'mathematics' when viewed from different angles:
https://www.newyorker.com/culture/culture-desk/what-is-mathematics

Best regards,
Hartmut
Dr. Hartmut Krech
https://de.linkedin.com/in/hartmut-krech-88a72637

Am 04.03.2021 um 09:44 schrieb Humanist:
>                    Humanist Discussion Group, Vol. 34, No. 257.
>          Department of Digital Humanities, University of Cologne
>                               Hosted by DH-Cologne
>                         www.dhhumanist.org
>                  Submit to: humanist@dhhumanist.org
>
>
>
>
>          Date: 2021-03-04 08:35:25+00:00
>          From: Willard McCarty 
>          Subject: quantification
>
> I'd be grateful for recommendations of studies on the psychology of
> quantification, especially the motivations and the consequences for
> research.
>
> Statements such as the following intrigue me:
>
>> Economist-historian David Landes: “Modern man is reassured by
>> numbers, which possess a quality of precision and certainty that mere
>> words cannot give. Their mathematical character discourages
>> criticism.” (150: 195f)
>>
>> Experimental psychologist Frederic Bartlett: “When a statement is
>> ‘quantified’, it seems to carry, to the majority of persons, a
>> superior certainty, and it passes without question.” (1940: 94)
>>
>> Sociologist John William Albig: “[T]here is a widespread faith that
>> figures do not lie. Such simplifications are frequently fatal to
>> impartial consideration but are usually useful in the dissemination
>> of conclusions.” (1956: 330)
> More recent studies?
>
> Many thanks.
>
> Yours,
> WM
>
> --
> Willard McCarty,
> Professor emeritus, King's College London;
> Editor, Interdisciplinary Science Reviews;  Humanist
> www.mccarty.org.uk
>
>
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