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Periodically I return to this great book, not only to squeeze every last drop of wisdom from it, but also to simply enjoy its prose Organizationally, the book is discursive, yet coherent.THE COHERENT WHOLE The plan of the book is four fold 1 We notice that even in the most objective sciences, we have to make subjective judgements The situation relies evenon our subjective selves the less formalized a discipline becomes 2 This observation spurs a long meditation on how our objective s Periodically I return to this great book, not only to squeeze every last drop of wisdom from it, but also to simply enjoy its prose Organizationally, the book is discursive, yet coherent.THE COHERENT WHOLE The plan of the book is four fold 1 We notice that even in the most objective sciences, we have to make subjective judgements The situation relies evenon our subjective selves the less formalized a discipline becomes 2 This observation spurs a long meditation on how our objective standards and subjective skills go together The melding of the two, of the subjective and objective, is what Polanyi calls Personal Knowledge 3 This meditation allows us to attack the question, How can we be confident in our knowledge, seeing that it relies on our finite and error prone selves The answer is, strangely perhaps, that though our judgements might be erroneous, we nevertheless feel compelled to make personal commitments to making our worlds of experiencesatisfactory 4 Our conclusion opens up a view of all of life, where each creature uses its tacit skill to achieve unprecedented forms of understanding The discarded view is the idea that life s creative outburst is the result of mechanistic, formal processes The new view is that life s lifeblood is a organic gestalt, where parts contribute to wholes in unprecedented and non predictable ways.THE DISCURSIVE SIDE Outside of this main plan, yet contributing to it, we travel over a huge range of territory Physics, mathematics, psychology, biology, politics, history, religion, philosophy are all called into play Along the way, we critique Marxism, scientism, mechanism, anti traditionalism, over traditionism, rationalism andIt s quite an adventure In it all, Polanyi says, look and see how it all goes together And it does.APPRAISAL History and tradition might, and I think should, look upon Polanyi s work favorably It is a very well argued work His discursive range is vast, and for dilettantes, a smorgasbord of delight And large portions of it are incontestably true very rare for philosophy A blemish appears to me Polanyi s realism It seems Polanyi is unsure that we ever actually make contact with the real world, though we must nevertheless accept naively the appearances we re given It would have been better if he had been aware of or argued for an Idealist conception of reality, where what is given in experience is actually the world In this case, a gnawing sense of unreality about our knowing acts, would have transfigured into a joyful contact with actuality But this means, at least, Idealists can appropriate his thoughts and feel their full vigor Libro eccezionale, che scuote le basi della presunta oggettivit scientifica ribaltandole a favore della conoscenza personale intesa come modalit prima di apprendimento Il testo del 1958, la chiarezza filosofica con cui affronta problematiche scientifiche inoppugnabile e alcune delle riflessioni qui messe su carta per esempio il tema delle conoscenze tacite esplicite sono state negli anni a venire rimasticate e banalizzate un po ovunque Una lettura fondamentale. This is such a thick, dense book, and so rich with ideas, some of which are brilliant and subtle, some of which reek of bullshit, and a great deal of which contradict each other.The core of it think harder about things, science isn t quite as positivist as we think it is, our daily experiences are peppered with acts of faith, and that everything occurs on multiple levels of experience our challenge as people who know things is to be cognizant of our acts of faith, and to realize which levels This is such a thick, dense book, and so rich with ideas, some of which are brilliant and subtle, some of which reek of bullshit, and a great deal of which contradict each other.The core of it think harder about things, science isn t quite as positivist as we think it is, our daily experiences are peppered with acts of faith, and that everything occurs on multiple levels of experience our challenge as people who know things is to be cognizant of our acts of faith, and to realize which levels we need to operate on to knowthings.It s a remarkable challenge, and it s a pity Michael Polanyi has been taken up by the intelligent design cretins despite the fact that he said we need to confront the fact that we evolved from inanimate matter simply because he was a 20th Century philosopher who was largely motivated by his Christianity It s definitely worth a read, especially for those of us who received a scientific education and want to continue to reflect on the lessons learned therein This is not for the faint of heart it s challenging and difficult in many places, but is one of the few books that Len Sweet assigns to every doctoral class that he teaches You will definitely be rewarded if you persevere, but maybe find a friend with whom you can discuss and compare notes It s about the fallacy of the purely scientific method and the impossibility of there being any kind of objective knowledge. ,, ,,, 1986 Reccomend this book to your enemies, especially the ones who act smarter than they are Why First, they ll have no excuse of saying it s Too old or Outdated Second, they ve never heard of Polanyi Third, it s less risky than dosing their drink with acid but equally effective Fourth, in case you decide not to you can read this obscure, mind breaking book yourself Shout out 2 Michael Polanyi, I found u amidst a pile of socks. Leslie Newbigin says he s heavily indebted to this book *READ BOOK ☠ Personal Knowledge ⇜ This study, first published in , offers Michael Polanyis epistemological insights Polanyi, originally a chemist and chemical physicist, is widely acclaimed for his epistemology which opposes the prevailing positivist approaches His discussion of tacit knowledge has proved to be influential in many fields from theology to artificial intelligence This text represnts a contribution to th century thought, and continues to make valuable insights to our understanding of how knowledge functions Wow, what a long slog this one was I have been off and on reading this for what feels like two years now I first happened upon Polyani after reading a pamphlet of his that touched on one of the themes of this work, that science is not a dogmatic authoritarian system of reason but an art that is practiced using all the inequitable faculties of humans That work was amazing I even gave it five stars but this book was the inevitability of extending that pamphlet across 400 pages of jargon l Wow, what a long slog this one was I have been off and on reading this for what feels like two years now I first happened upon Polyani after reading a pamphlet of his that touched on one of the themes of this work, that science is not a dogmatic authoritarian system of reason but an art that is practiced using all the inequitable faculties of humans That work was amazing I even gave it five stars but this book was the inevitability of extending that pamphlet across 400 pages of jargon laden ontology on scientism this book was painful I certainly have no problem with dense works, but when the work is both dense, steeped in an out moded philosophy, AND problematic on a number of supporting points You are going to lose me The fact is Polyani suffered from the need to outline a grand scheme in Husserlian fashion so that what we come up with is a Phenomenology of Science which sounds amazing, until we remember where Husserl went wrong Well, all those same issues can be applied to this work.There are some good points such as his notion of conviviality, a thorough and exhausting understanding of the nuanced scientific investigations of his day, etc., but the tower of fail continues to build brick by brick as he outlines an ontology of human epistemology and how it is expressed in the individual applying this in pursuit of scientific discovery.At the end of the day I cannot recommend this book, though I may revisit it another year, but till then, I feel generous giving this grueling opus two stars If anything its at least a unique outpost in the genre of history of science This is certainly an essential book to read if one is interested in epistemology in general and absolutely necessary if one is wanting to understandof the scientific method and the myth that is upheld about science s objectivity Polanyi argues very well, and well informed, about how the scientist needs to be personal in his her quest for knowledge Personal knowledge does not directly lead to relativity though But here I think is the weak point in the book I didn t perhaps read it as th This is certainly an essential book to read if one is interested in epistemology in general and absolutely necessary if one is wanting to understandof the scientific method and the myth that is upheld about science s objectivity Polanyi argues very well, and well informed, about how the scientist needs to be personal in his her quest for knowledge Personal knowledge does not directly lead to relativity though But here I think is the weak point in the book I didn t perhaps read it as thorough as I should have, but to my mind there wasn t really a obvious argument for why there still is right and wrong, and how come the scientific method is better in understanding the world than for example the tribe magic world view Also, there are long sections on the results of animal tests which I didn t quite understand how they tied in to his main argument As such, this book could possibly be read selectively, but it might be difficult from the start to know what to skip, because you have to engage when reading this book, personally