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Another front in the science wars?

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The editors are delighted that ‘The Science of Art’ by Ramachandran and Hirstein (1999) has generated such a volume of commentary. We take our subtitle ‘controversies in science and the humanities’ very seriously, and it would appear that scientific enquiry into aesthetic appreciation is indeed both controversial and topical. We invited V.S. Ramachandran to respond to criticism specific to his paper in the interview which follows this editorial; we consider this interview a brilliant reply to his critics, and that it includes some important additions and clarifications. Here we wish to consider the controversies surrounding the article and its commentaries in the broader context of the so-called science wars, and the general question of whether insights from science and the humanities can be integrated, or at least be allowed to peacefully coexist.

Document Type: Review Article

Publication date: January 1, 2001


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