Importance Of Literature Vs Science Essay Questions

Essay on The Importance of Literature vs. Science

1196 WordsOct 21st, 19995 Pages

The Importance of Literature vs. Science

If we lived in a world without literature, learning only the sciences, would we be the same people? Does the human race need literature at all, does it have any worth whatsoever except as entertainment? Do people actually learn from literature? These are all questions that divide the human race into two separate sections, those who believe in the power of literature, and those who see it as impoverished compared to the social sciences in its ability to teach us about ourselves. However we need not be so divided on this issue.
Literature is as rich a teacher as science, but merely differs in technique.
Literature offers knowledge to those that seek it, gives experience to those who
understand…show more content…

It is the argument of science that people are similar and thus scientific averages do have some relevance to humans. Yes people often do share similar characteristics, and behave similarly if coming from the same society. And thus, a detailed insight into one persons' life could give you an insight on the lives of others. In a way Literature allows you to live thousands of lives in a short time, and gain a little experience from each of them. Science on the other hand, offers you charts and tables to which you must apply the situations of daily life. It is in this fundamental way that literature and science are different.
Literature offers you insight which you apply to life, in science, you apply life to your theories. It's just a matter of whether life is the cookie cutter or the dough. Imagine a world without literature. All your Literature courses in school are replaced with social sciences: philosophy, psychology, etc. Would people be the same? No doubt life would be a great deal less interesting, as our minds would not be as stimulated. The world would also be a more closed place, and news, and history would seem less related and more distant. Why?
Because sciences do not show you what something is like, the describe it. For example, if science wanted to describe a hit and run it would say "Yesterday,
7/15/96, one 5'4 Caucasian of birth date 3/16/70, was contacted by a rapidly
moving

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It is easy to get confused about the difference between literature reviews and essays because these two writing structures can be based on the same research.  However, the main difference is on where the emphasis is placed.

The purpose of an essay is to use what is known about a subject to prove an argument or point of view.  Not all of the knowledge of a topic may be used in an essay, but only what is relevant to the argument.  In an essay, mentioning the people who discovered or developed the knowledge is generally only for referencing purposes.

On the other hand, a literature review is designed to be a critical analysis of all the knowledge that has been discovered about a subject.  Its purpose is to examine all that others have already discovered about the subject and the researchers working on the subject are considered to be key.

At a sentence level, one way to emphasise a particular aspect of a subject is to place that aspect at the beginning of sentences and paragraphs.

In an essay, where the focus is on the knowledge itself, it is put to the front of sentences.  For example:

Playing computer and video games have risen dramatically in popularity.  It is estimated that three billion hours of gaming are played globally each week.  The major reason for this is because players are able to tap into a high level of emotional satisfaction that is difficult to experience in everyday life (McGonigal, 2011).

However, in literature reviews what is considered to be more important are the authors and researchers who found or developed the information.  Therefore they appear at the beginning of sentences.

Jane McGonigal (2011) estimates that three billion hours of gaming are played globally every week.  Her research suggests that the major reason for this is because players are able to tap into a high level of emotional satisfaction that is difficult to experience in everyday life.

This is not to say that both kinds of sentences can be used in both types of writing.  However, the overall trend for essays is to emphasise the information, whereas for literature reviews the trend is to emphasise the authors.

For more on the differences between the structure of essays and the structure of literature reviews,  check out QUT Cite|Write

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