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Subjective research produces the desired, politically correct result at Western universities

 

Historian and philosopher of science, Thomas S. Kuhn has showed how subjective much of the research at universities really is.

Subjective research: Herbert Marcuse and the New Left' strategy to silence the Majority: Hanne Herland Report
Subjective research Hanne Nabintu Herland is a historian of comparative religions, bestselling author and founder of The Herland Report.

The historical development of scientific theories illustrates how the dominant epistemology within the social sciences are built on Leftwing ideologies strongly influences the personal opinions of politically correct professors.

Subjective research: The individual scientist is often much more influenced by the political ideologies of his time and subjected to a peer-pressure to reach the politically correct conclusions that he very well knows will be applauded. He, therefore, tends to end up interpreting his subject-matter in line with ideological trends. Sometimes he is aware of this; sometimes it is unintentional.

In The Structure of Scientific Revolutions, Kuhn explains that in science, the dominant understanding of reality builds on a series of assumptions. It becomes the intellectual’s role to produce evidence that supports the dominant academic consensus, which Kuhn calls the dominant paradigm, writes Hanne Nabintu Herland, historian of comparative religions, author and the founder of The Herland Report.

 

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Subjective research: A paradigm, the theoretical framework of a scientific school, may work wonderfully and enable scientists to provide a framework within which the scientist may map the pieces of his findings into a system of understanding. Yet, if paradigms are inadequate, they end up making wrong assumptions, and its conclusions, in turn, fail.

In other words, research easily becomes biased and tendentious, based on the professor’s personal convictions or ideological lens. Kuhn points out that the role of the oppositional intellectual is to challenge the ruling paradigm and break the logjam of politically correct assumptions.

If no one dares break out of the deadlock, and nobody poses critical questions in order to examine whether the current hypothesis’ actually hold water, the quality of intellectual thinking is steadily reduced.

 

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Subjective research:  Indeed, others before Kuhn had studied the problem of twisting history in order to make it better fit the ruling paradigms.

In the 1600s, Francis Bacon complained in Novum Organum of the medieval scientist, that he did not sufficiently incorporate a sufficient range of experience in framing his decisions. The scientist first determined the question and then sought for the answers he wished for, Bacon said, those answers that fit his assumptions, to begin with. He stated that a scientist’s method too often ended up bending the evidence to suit his own ideology or preference. Every age needs critical thinking, so to speak.

It is, for instance, a historical fact that the Early Middle Ages was a time when monasteries were the leading intellectual learning sites, educating the elite and providing for the poor and needy. Yet, modern-day professors have often referred to this age “The Dark Ages.”

It is true that the term also refers to the period after the fall of the Roman Empire onward, yet many regularly use the term when referring to the Early Middle Ages, negatively focusing on the religious world-view at the time. On the other hand, the 1600s is described as the “Age of Enlightenment,” implying that as scientists were questioning God, increasingly critical of traditional religion, looking for other explanations of nature, that would somehow make them more “enlightened” than the previous generations.

There seems to be an underlying need, a hidden agenda, to insinuate that an age of strong religious beliefs automatically was “a dark phase” in European history. Yet, it was the early Christian medieval thinkers who first enhanced rationality on a large-scale, placing the ability to reason on the same level as faith, stating that both of these qualities lead to knowledge.

The scholastics during the Middle Ages studied nature and the cosmos in order to understand God better, and strongly emphasized the need for rationality. They laid the foundation for the later study of modern science and order in nature.

If academic debates are to remain free and open, inquisitive questions must be posed in order to look for flaws in the current paradigm, and thereby find better solutions to unresolved problems. Reflections on how the professor or researcher taints his own research with a subjective approach has long been debated.

How is it possible to attain research that is as little as possible colored by the views or opinions of the researcher? How do we know that the scientific papers that we read are not simply reflections of the professor presenting the politically correct narrative or paradigm? In other words, how exactly is he trying to influence me?

After all, empirical facts are interpreted by a researcher, who himself is part of a particular paradigm or academic world view. It is not only the facts that speak but the voice of the interpreter. He is the one that in qualitative research poses questions to informants, for example, in a particular way. He knows that if he asks the question in a certain way, it is likely that he gets more negative answers.

If he, on the contrary, asks the same informants about the same issue but poses the question from another angle, he is likely to get many more to answer yes. Positively, the question “Are you sure that you, as a modern intelligent person, believe in an old-fashioned religion that is outdated in so many ways?” will probably give different replies than: “Do you believe in meaningful, spiritual values that create solidarity, empathy, and love between people?”

In social sciences and humanism, research thus implies that the professor is aware of the fact that he is determining how the informant’s answers turn out, depending on the way he poses the question. If a professor is strongly influenced by Social Darwinism – that is the application of biological Darwinian evolution to social fields and cultures – it is quite easy for the same professor to make anyone from Borneo, Congo, Peru or somewhere else that sounds very “foreign” seem “backward” or a “less developed” human.

For example, Borneo animism may be described with an underlying, condescending tone. A Congolese’s belief in God will be depicted as relics from a dying world, something that “a rational modern person” understands to be “outdated religion and indigenous belief.”

Professors and intellectuals who should have defended fearless speech, instead become puppets of an academic elite, rather than being critical voices, posing questions to those in power. If critical voices are silenced, and open discussions cease, scientific research itself glides into an apathetic self-confirming state.

In such a society, being an academic means taking the role of someone whose job is to confirm the ideas of the political establishment – to uphold the current narrative. To many professors, it becomes a question of complying in order to receive the necessary research funds, the right promotions, his job depends on it.

After all, he has a career and needs to earn a living. Posing unpopular questions may easily result in his career coming to an abrupt halt, and he knows it. This is a subtle form of tyranny, a soft despotism.

It is ironic. We used to pity the intellectuals of the Soviet Union and speak of how they lacked freedom of thought. We said that living under such Communist propaganda and suppressive conditions, far from a free-spirited critical intellectual debate, must have been excruciatingly hard. We felt sorry for the many who had to flee the country and move to the West.

Now it is we who have university systems with much of the same kind of wide spread fear and censorship. This is happening in the heart of the Western culture.

 

About the author

The level of censorship in social media and search engines is all-time high. Do like thousands of others, subscribe to The Herland Report newsletter here!

Hanne Nabintu Herland is a historian of religions and bestselling author. She is the founder of The Herland Report Scandinavian news site, TV channel on YouTube and Podcasts which have millions of readers/viewers. This is a great place to watch interviews with leading intellectuals, thought leaders from across the political spectrum. Herland’s books include Alarm, Respect, Det Nye Babylon (2018), Tyranni (2020) and in English – The Culture War. How the West lost its Greatness (2017)Trump. The Battle for America (2020) as well as  New Left Tyranny. The Authoritarian Destruction of Our Way of Life (2020), available on Amazon, Barnes and Noble, across the USA and in 60 countries world-wide. New Left Tyranny shows how the neo-Marxist New Left turned their back on historical Western principles and became a destructive authoritarian force. www.theherlandreport.com

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