Presentation Details

The Second International Conference on New Directions in the Humanities

To the Point and its Connections: Don’t our Various Rationalisms Fail on the Levels of the Simple and the Complex?: Minding And Closing The Gap

Francis Schwanauer.

As a logical consequence of our vagueness and ambiguity on the level of the simple, none of the more complex definitions in our technical rationalisms are free of serious flaws in most of our assumptions. Global harmony as based on common understanding remains utopian or wishful thinking, until we are finally ready for the almost imperceptible but necessary change in the interpretation of Darwin’s observations from the exclusive “survival of the fittest” to the inclusive ”survival of the fitting”, as exemplified by the mathematical attempts of the Yang-Mills theory [YMT]) to close the gap between seemingly irreconcilable extremes. What I propose in my presentation is a positive ontology of such “fitting” of the simple within the complex in order to a) tie and/or reconcile such seemingly impossible extremes as quantum particles having positive masses with classical waves at the speed of light (cp. YMT), b) harmonize interpretations and overcome local uncertainties which divide and separate most of us in both the arts and the sciences (cp. Heisenberg’s uncertainty principle and Einstein’s law of relativity), and thus, c) reverse seemingly irreconcilable differences due to language, ideology, race, sex, etc., in our global society. This, however, may not be achieved without the painstaking elimination of some falsehoods in our interpretations in respect to the simple, and the correction of some inconsistencies in our thinking as regards the complex.


Francis Schwanauer  (United States)
Professor of Philosophy
Department of Philosophy
Univ. of Southern Maine

  • Testing Of Interpretations
  • Inclusive
  • Exclusive
  • Simple
  • Complex
  • Fittest
  • Fitting

(60 min. Workshop, English)