As are not generally accepted today. A clichéd

As the spiritual catalyst, Teal Swan, once said “The purpose ofdisagreement is not a victory or defeat, it is progress.1″Her words suggest that along with consensus, disagreement is crucial for theproduction and evolution of knowledge. In these situations, consensus means anopinion held by most and disagreement means lack of approval. In context of thechosen title, knowledge is anything that can be justified to help make sense ofour surrounding. As believed by John Locke, knowledge is also the “perceptionof the agreement or disagreement of two ideas.2” Robustknowledge can be viewed to be strong and flexible.

Therefore, its malleabilitymay either require consensus and disagreement to bring about any change. Sinceapproaches to knowledge differ slightly across all areas of knowledge, thelevel of consensus or disagreement on any discipline could vary. For instance,earlier practices that were believed to be necessary are not generally acceptedtoday. A clichéd disagreementbetween two theories that puts my knowledge issues into perspective is of the’Geocentric theory’. Through Heliocentrism, Aristarchus of Samos’s was able toclaim his theory that instead of the Earth, it is the Sun that is at the centerof the universe. For the reason that the original theory was opposed, peoplemust have been provoked to question and understand contrasting views. Thisimplies that, when we put different thoughts together, both sides of the issueis addressed, which ultimately leads to assist in refining and developing theinitial knowledge.

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Consequently, it is logical to say that participation of peoplealong with their individual biases may lead to consensus and disagreement. Thisidea rises some possible knowledge questions: what knowledge is consideredrobust? To what extent is consensus and disagreement required in order toproduce robust knowledge?  Does knowledgerely on the opinion of experts or the laymen? Moreover, what constitutesconsensus? In order to tackle my knowledge issues, Iwill investigate how consensus and disagreement comes to play a key role ininfluencing robust knowledge through Human Sciences and The Arts. Consensus and disagreement allows thedevelopment of initial knowledge. Throughouthistory, many scientific theories and ideas have been rejected. In 1972,Craik and Lockhart disagreed on the multi-store model of memory. They werecompelled to perform experiments from which a new theory was evolved, named”Level of Processing.” Due to the conflict between the two psychologists, thereis a strong possibility that disagreement must have motivated them to determinethe actuality of memory recall.

Their disagreement aided in strengthening theirinitial knowledge. Another example is of the anatomist,Franz Joseph Gall. He says that “as the skull takes its shape from the brain,the surface of the skull can be read as an accurate index of psychologicaltendencies.

3″Although early attempts to locate the cause of behavior appears rather ridiculousto modern science, it was once widely accepted by many neurologists. Developedscientific methods and perspective surpassed this initial knowledge. With time,assigned personality traits to particular brain areas was proved fancifulthrough the use of modern brain scanning instruments. In psychology, we learnedthat different regions of the brain do in fact have distinct functions. Eventhough the primary assumption behind phrenology was later discredited, it hasforeshadowed several phenomenon of modern psychology. Hence, the practice ofphrenology was marginalized and evolved into ‘Localization of Brain Function.

‘ Wilhelm Wundt is regardedas the founding figure of experimental psychology. He has influenced severalpsychologists to conduct research under controlled conditions. In the early1880s, his technique of introspection was considered a “fundamental tool ofpsychological experimentation.4″Nevertheless, since the behavioral knowledge obtained from the experimentsdiffered their explanations, the concept behind introspection was rejected.

Even so, the concept later emerged into an enhanced, modern concept ofintrospection known as the ‘Quantitative Linguistic Analysis.’ However, it shouldalso be considered that consensus and disagreement may not always refineknowledge, but rather repress it. Having an abundance of disagreement couldlead to a negative environment. Due to several disparate ideas being offered, adisoriented atmosphere is bound to occur.

This is a possible reason behind whysome initial knowledge fails to improve. For example, the theory of’Characteroloy’ was developed to objectively evaluate any individual’scharacteristics. With several supporters and some who opposed the theorypresent, most of the empirical studies failed to provide evidence for thistheory because each evidence supported a different thought and henceforth thetheory was rejected. This proves that although consensus and disagreement may refine the initial knowledge, it couldto an extent be refuted and repressed.  It is possible to link the Human Sciencesand emotions in the process of refining or developing knowledge. Sinceindividuals can understand one another through emotion and sense-perception,rather than scientific knowledge, it is plausible for consensus anddisagreement to take place.

Psychology teaches us that our thought processesare, to a certain degree, determined by our surrounding. For example, thetheory of unresponsive bystander claims that when people are aware of otherspresence, they “may be afraid of being evaluated negatively.5″Hence, fearing to be proven wrong, people may develop their thoughts andactions accordingly. Being opposed can lead to an emotional arousal, leading tolearning the truth and forming knowledge.

Therefore, it can be appropriate tosay that our emotions, either by our will or with the fear of being disagreedupon, eventually triggers new ideas and cross-fertilization of existing ones. Only knowledge that has withstoodcriticism is considered robust. The falsification principle states that “forany hypothesis to have credence, it must be inherently disprovable before itcan become accepted as a scientific hypothesis or theory.6” KarlPopper’s theory is, by far, considered one of the most prevalent critic ofpsychoanalysis. He claims that psychoanalysis cannot be considered a sciencebecause its “so-called predictions are not predictions of overt behavior but ofhidden psychological states.

This is why they are so untestable.7″Despite being unfalsifiable, Freudian Psychoanalytic Theory is widely familiartoday. It was continuously rejected and adulterated, yet Sigmund Freud kindleda revolution in psychoanalysis. Furthermore, robustness of Freudian’sPsychoanalytic Theory has been maintained. Several examples in the discipline of Artshave withstood criticism as well. Arts has evolved throughout centuries.

For instance,if there was not agreement or disagreement in arts, nothing would have beendifferent and spontaneous. Irrespective of all the disapproval, Salvador Dali’swork has withstood challenges and criticism through time. His work wasridiculed by other surrealist’s who failed to grasp his impression of Surrealism.Although Dali was expelled from the surrealist community, he constantly createdmore realistic works and evolved throughout his career. By the end, Dali’s workremains a memorial of Surrealism. Mario Klingemann’s work is another example ofcreative knowledge production. Klingemann makes art autonomously usingartificial intelligence such as algorithms and data. He says that “these newforms always have a hard time being accepted by the establishment.

8″ Theprocess behind his work stretches the limits of imagination and has raised questionsamongst viewers and artists on how neural networks can be considered art. Yet,Klingemann believes that all art work have gradually earned their place overthe past decades.Thus far, we must also consider the view thatrobust knowledge does not require criticism to evolve, but rather a change inperspective. Besides, consensus and disagreement does not always hinder robustknowledge. A possible reason is of human beings natural tendency to discovernew opportunities. The influence of our upbringing, predefined knowledge andsituational factors changes our perspectives. Since our beliefs constantly altersalong with the changes in our society, we may perceive our surroundingdifferently. Similarly, in the AOK of The Arts, our sense-perception about whatconstitutes art may revolve around our confirmation bias.

To some, almostanything can be considered art whilst others adhere to strict rules. The Artsdoes not have limitations of shared knowledge, but rather the tendency to givepreference to things that confirms our prior beliefs. Moreover, the ability todistinguish between terms as hypothesis, falsification and theory is anessential understanding for scientists and psychologist. Which, as a matter offact, could be unclear for laymen as the use of such terms may differ in our conversationalcontext. These scientific terminologies are the basis of robust knowledge insciences that revolves around our sense-perception on the meaning behind theusage of specific terms. Coming back to the words of Teal Swan, disagreementis part of the human sciences and The Arts as without it, “progress” would notoccur. Her statement implies that disagreement leads to the discovery anddevelopment of knowledge.

For instance, disagreement between psychologists havemotivated them to strengthen their initial knowledge. Without it, initialknowledge have terminated instead of improving. The Arts have shown thedevelopment of new ideas through people’s perception. Whether a piece of artwould continue or halt depends on pupils level of consensus and disagreement. Conclusively,scientific question, open-mindedness and people’s perception leads to consensusand disagreement. I reckon that to a certain extent, the claim can be debatable.Indeed, both consensus and disagreement is vital in the process of refiningknowledge and that criticism eventually produces robust knowledge.

Sinceknowledge is only produced through being falsified and proven, the areas ofknowledge of Human Science and The Arts do therefore lead me to the conclusionthat robust knowledge requires consensus and disagreement. 1 Kirk. “Teal Swan.” – Quotes -Teal Swan, Invision Community, 27 Oct. 2011,–r295/.

2 “BOOK IV.” John Locke: AnEssay Concerning Human Understanding, Enlightenment, “Phrenology.” Big Picture,Wellcome, Jan.

2013, McLeod, Saul. “SaulMcLeod.” Father of Psychology , Simply Psychology, 1 Jan. 1970,www. Burton, Derek. “Category:Bystanderism.

” IB Psychology, Burton Inc. and VIBE Education Ltd., 26 Mar.2014, www. Shuttleworth , Martyn.”Falsifiability.” Karl Popper’s Basic Scientific Principle, CreativeCommons, 21 Sept.

2008, Beystehner, Kristen M.”Psychoanalysis: Freud’s Revolutionary Approach to HumanPersonality.” Psychoanalysis: Freud’s Revolutionary Approach,www. Simonite, Tom. “A ‘Neurographer’Puts the Art in Artificial Intelligence.” Wired, Conde Nast, 7 July 2017,


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