Methods in social research by William Goode, Paul Hatt

By William Goode, Paul Hatt

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By William Goode, Paul Hatt

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Is quoted as having said that gossip is the lifeblood of physics. That evalua- 24 METIIODS IN SOCIAL ru:SEARCH tion by colleagues may be "informed" evaluation does not remove the fact that value judgments are inseparable from the selection of scientific problems. " Whatever the answer to this question may be, clearly it must be put in terms of the value judgments made by the scientist. The bases of choice are values. Science and its values must be chosen as a way of life in competition with other values, other possible vocations.

THE APPRAISAL OF SCIENTIFIC WORK Dr. Vannevar Bush, head of the Office of Scientific Research and Development during World War II, was quoted as stating that during that period science practically came to a standstill. Since such a remark is so much at variance with popular opinion, it will bear looking into. Dr. Bush could not have meant that scientific activity ceased, since it is well known that scientists were working hard during the war period. What he meant, of course, is that work of importance to science diminished sharply.

Similarly the student of anthropology and sociology must learn that "culture" does not refer to an acquaintanceship with opera, painting, literature, or "good" manners, but rather to the totality of the social heritage of any society. On the other hand, the word has an entirely different meaning in bacteriology. In any similar case the simultaneous existence of more than one meaning constitutes a trap for the unwary student.

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