Stage 1: Introductory comments on holism

This stage involves a survey of selected work on, or informed by, holistic thought. The two documents attached comprise Part I of Stage 1 and Part II.

This involves a survey of selected prior work on holistic thought. The purpose of this survey is to provide a preliminary clarification of the extent and character of such thought within contemporary Western culture and to highlight the principal logical and ethical debates to which it has given rise. Some of the works from which initial orientation will be taken include Denis Charles Phillips’s Holistic Thought in Social Science (1976), Anne Harrington’s Reenchanted Science: Holism in German Culture from Wilhelm II to Hitler (1996), and Linda Sergent Wood’s A More Perfect Union: Holistic Worldviews and the Transformation of American Culture (2010).

The document has been put together by project Research Officer Christian McMillan and represents his views alone.

Key research questions considered within this stage:

The research questions are as follows:
􀁸 Why does holism attract strong valuations? And is the positive or negative point of view, if either, better warranted?
􀁸 What is the nature of the underpinning concept of ultimate wholeness?
􀁸 How does the concept relate to the multiplicities of experience? And are there links between a particular concept of ultimate wholeness and the ethical valuations attaching to holistic thought?

Stage 1 – Introduction and Part I

Stage 1 – Part II (Includes case study on the holistic thought of von Uxekull)


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