ISSUE-116

No field of study can advance significantly unless it incorporates knowledge and experience from outside that field.


Write a response in which you discuss the extent to which you agree or disagree with the statement and explain your reasoning for the position you take. In developing and supporting your position, you should consider ways in which the statement might or might not hold true and explain how these considerations shape your position.


Human knowledge is advancing so rapidly that more and more disciplines can no longer exist and develop in isolation from other disciplines. The intermingling of different disciplines has led to an increasingly rapid development of human culture. Nevertheless, I still believe that the idea that no discipline can exist without integrating other disciplines is too extreme.


There are numerous instances of disciplines interacting with each other. For example, in the natural sciences, physics, chemistry, and biology are studies of different magnitudes of the same natural world. Traditionally, the smallest unit of biological research is the cell, the smallest unit of chemical research is the atom, and the more microscopic world belongs to physical research. This also means that biology must rely on chemistry to explain the nature of phenomena at the cellular scale, and chemistry must rely on particle physics to explain phenomena at the atomic scale, giving birth to molecular biology (a combination of biology and chemistry) and physical chemistry (a combination of physics and chemistry). Specifically, the synthesis of many compounds appears to be a simple chemical process, but it is necessary to tune the right conditions for the reaction: precise pressures and temperatures need to be calculated to be high enough to enable the reaction, but remain within the limits of what the equipment can handle, and this requires the intervention of physics. Explaining the traits of organisms was a classic biological problem, but the discovery of DNA has turned all this upside down, and by deciphering the molecular structure of each organism's DNA, we have achieved a fundamental explanation of biological traits.


In addition, disciplines in the humanities and social sciences have borrowed from and exchanged ideas with each other more frequently. For example: for the study of Asian Americans, historians have dug through valuable archives to give the political, economic, and diplomatic reasons for early Asian immigration to the United States. Asian American literature not only helps literary scholars to analyze the state of Asian American existence in depth, but also reflects the immediate impact of macro-historical events on the group from a literary perspective. Anthropologists, through interviews, and sociologists, through surveys and other methods, can study the lives and cultures of Asian individuals and entire groups at different levels. It is inevitable that these disciplines will learn from and rely on each other, and the interconnectedness of their research results will enable them to further their respective studies of "Asian Americans.


Moreover, the applied nature of engineering has already decided that it must rely on natural science to provide the theoretical foundation, mathematics to provide the computational tools, and social research to decide what kind of project is worth building. For example, the construction of a bridge can not be built without the support of mechanical theory, and the complex calculations of the traffic pressure, wind and water under the action of mathematical models cannot be built without the help of mathematical models. But fundamentally, whether the bridge should be built or not is the result of various social factors such as traffic, economy, and population.


While the examples of disciplinary integration may seem innumerable, we still need to be clear that not all disciplines cannot be separated from the integration of other disciplines. For example, mathematics and logic are non-empirical disciplines, meaning that their axioms and theorems hold or do not hold independently of the physical world's existence. In other words, even if all the theories of the natural sciences were wrong, it would not affect the validity of the laws of mathematics and logic at all.


However, the truth or falsity of mathematical laws does not depend on other disciplines, but their discovery is influenced by developments in other disciplines. First of all, large-scale computing can no longer be separated from the development of computer science. More importantly, the development of other disciplines makes demands on mathematics, and when mathematical theories have applications in these disciplines, the relevant mathematical theories gain more attention and are more likely to be developed. Examples: the development of Einstein's theory of relativity contributed to the development of high-dimensional geometry, and now string theory fundamentally demands mathematical tools as well; the development of the insurance industry brought about the advance of actuarial science.


In summary, while there are numerous examples of disciplines that are increasingly dependent on the integration of disciplines, it is too extreme to assume that all disciplines are dependent on integration with other disciplines in order to develop.

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