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Today’s critical state of philosophy is examined by considering two of its aspects: the way in which philosophy presently is ever more typically practised (increasing professionalism and specialisation) and the new challenges it has to face to keep up with the changed scientific, and more generally cultural and social context. The essay outlines some prospects of progress in the light of those which still now can be considered the proper tasks of philosophical inquiry. Such tasks are singled out through an historical survey of the original characters of philosophy and an appraisal of its theoretical motivations. The importance of the history of philosophy and the necessity of achieving a virtuous relation among the various philosophical disciplines are stressed to contrast the dangers of excess specialisation and professionalism.


, leadership and intrapersonal qualities as a teaching subject was uncommon among the students’ learning experiences in their secondary school lives. Furthermore, with the rise of specialization and professionalism in the competitive world, the outcomes in tertiary education focused more on the technical and occupational domains, with the holistic development of young people being ignored [ 12 ]. University students became more instrumental and functional in perceiving their needs and the purpose of education. Thus, the students showed approach-avoidance behaviors in the

expressive activity of forming a community of faith. It is a society that rewards specialization and professionalism. The priest in the secular world is looked upon as a 'good guy' but is ignored or devalued because his credentials are not relevant. The theology of the priesthood didn't provide answers to these dilemmas and questions. What is the proper ministry of the priest? Troubled transition in the Church 3 What can't a lay person do that a priest can do, except offer Mass and hear confessions? Is the secular world the sole domain of the priesthood of the

:284). I have stressed specialization and professionalism as par t of an in- digenous economic m o m e n t u m . This created not only individual fundis, but associated entire tribes and villages with part icular trades and han- dicrafts. T o the long list of specialists ment ioned above was added the professional e lephant hunter , the Makua, in the middle years of the nineteenth century. This was a dar ing and flamboyant profession which 1 1 8 ECOLOGY C O N T R O L A N D E C O N O M I C DEVELOPMENT fashioned its organization on the many guild-like creations of

of the sector it was found in and the goals of the organization (Weber 1946, 1947, Wilson 1977: 200-230). The reasons for this must include the collapse of the very "market" that corporate, oligopolistic, and managerial capitalism has so significantly transformed and restructured. But it also expresses our often naive confidence in organization as a technique of problem solving, alongside the trained incapacity of modern specialization and professionalism and the rise of what Collins, in yet another confirmation of Weber, has called the credential society

report.” In other words, Bianchon is to conduct an experiment on Goriot to ascertain which faculty of his mind has a lesion. specialization as obsession While Goriot is not a particularly intellectual man, he illustrates some of the stresses of living life in the fast track in a complex and pressured soci- ety. But Esquirol and others came to link monomania and other forms of insanity with the very things that we would now praise as the best things produced by civilization—art and learning. The rise of specialization and professionalism are characteristic of the

, they grounded their historical subjects more firmly in past contexts. In both countries, two additional factors were at work during these turn-of-the-century decades to accentuate the difference between present and past. Specialization and professionalism raised the standard of archival research for historians, sharpened their sense of the differ- entness of the past, and produced the demand that the past be studied for its own sake rather than being subordinated to present political purposes. In England, William Stubbs had already raised the bar at Oxford, and

between a "chaotic" elective system and those react- ing against atomizing specialization and professionalism. A general education curriculum, some argued, should combat fragmentation and provide a common learning experience-above all exposure to that Western tradition that could equip citizens with the sense of a common identity, common past, and common purpose. American history had been about leaving the Old World behind. As the nineteenth century ended, as the twentieth century began, Americans started to rediscover the past that they had shed, no longer as

irresistible funds, for short-term, result-oriented, "crash" undertak- ings, with fundamental research downgraded in favor of the application of what was already known. Fields would proliferate, and specialization and professionalism be intensified. The decline of the university as the world's one long-term workplace was beginning. Nor was it only the state schools which would soon be recognized as service institutions, providing what- ever the public, or any powerful segment of it, thought was needed im- mediately; the private universities too would expand their

tenet of American exceptionalism, they believed that they could stay aloof from ideology and religion and construct their own enterprises of social scientific knowledge production by emphasizing objectivity, specialization, and professionalism.24 In many ways, the development of American social sciences early in the The Rise of the Fact / 27 Lam, A Passion for Facts 8/18/11 12:58 PM Page 27 twentieth century has to be understood against the larger backdrop of the era’s unprecedented expansion of industrial capitalism. The intensification of industrialization as well