Written by Bwog Staff
It’s BwogSalon, a feature in which we get a chance to look at other Columbia publications
for more procrastination material and the fantastic work they are doing. Today, we’re exploring What is Global Health? (WiGH?), a science philosophy podcast and digital publication. Check out the fancy pants podcast’s last episode called “Game Changers,” which features Christia Mercer below.
Name of Publication: WiGH? The Digital Media Project of The Journal of Global Health (JGH)
Edition: Episode 6
WiGH? is a science philosophy podcast and digital publication managed by the undergraduate publication team of The Journal of Global Health (JGH) at Columbia. It seeks to examine the moral quandaries faced by researchers and scientists at the decision-making level and whether these dilemmas are the same ones faced by people involved in entirely different fields of discourse. By fostering greater interdisciplinary dialogue on the fundamental moral questions in health, it hopes to synthesize cross-curricular and cross-cultural solutions to major public health problems in a globalized world.
Although so-called “Eureka moments” and scientific revolutions are rare, every once in a while, a new idea or discovery ends up galvanizing a community of thinkers towards a new direction. This upcoming episode is interested in game changers, the causal agents of paradigm shifts in the way we think. Scientists can spend decades pursuing a particular question and constructing a theory or model to account for the phenomenon in question. But a single discovery, perhaps a few pixels pop up in the corner of an electron microscope, can cause an entire field to realize that they were pursuing the wrong question.
In Part 1 of Episode 6 of WiGH? (Game Changers), Christia Mercer, Ph.D., Gustave Berne Professor of Philosophy and Chair of Literature Humanities at Columbia, discusses the notion of a disconnect between Nature in and of itself and what scientists, or in general, people, believe it to be.
“What I think is really exciting is that contemporary physics has raised new questions that I think take metaphysicians to try to analyze carefully…there are new questions that rise about space and time, there are new questions that rise about part and wholes…when people say that there was a split between metaphysics and physics, in fact, it wasn’t true then, and it probably has never been true, and it surely isn’t true now.”
BAMF via Columbia