Limits - Research Article from Encyclopedia of Science, Technology, and Ethics

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Limits

The question of human limits, both cognitive and moral, is a persistent theme in the history of religion and philosophy. Both Siddhartha Gautama (Buddha, c. 563–c. 483 B.C.E.) and Socrates (469–399 B.C.E.) argued, in quite different ways, for the human acceptance of limits. Indeed, in general premodern traditions in human culture widely acknowledged both theoretical and practical limits on human knowledge and action.

Thus ever since the founding of modernity, with its appeals to transcend many traditional limits in the development of science and technology—and even certain aspects of the human condition—the question of whether and to what extent there might be new limits to the modern project has been a recurring theme. Late eighteenth and early nineteenth century poets such as Johann Wolfgang von Goethe (1749–1832) and William Blake (1757–1827) called for recognition of cognitive limits in modern science...

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This section contains 1,451 words
(approx. 5 pages at 300 words per page)
Buy the Limits Encyclopedia Article
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Macmillan
Limits from Macmillan. Copyright © 2001-2006 by Macmillan Reference USA, an imprint of the Gale Group. All rights reserved.
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