” number of reasons. Firstly, to effectively

” We know with confidence only when we know little; with knowledge doubt increases” JW Goethe. Discuss this statement with reference to two areas of knowledge.” The knowledge claim “We know with confidence only when we know little; with knowledge doubt increases” is problematic for number of reasons. Firstly, to effectively evaluate this knowledge claim, the type of knowledge needs to be specified. In the question it states “we know” referring to knowledge being created, shaped or belonging to a group of people. Therefore, the essay will focus on shared knowledge in natural science and history.

Secondly, the amount and value of the knowledge applied and who reasons the value of knowledge. The reasoning of the value of knowledge depends on the knower that interprets the knowledge, since the value of shared knowledge can be interpreted differently in an academic community compared to a non expert community. Thirdly, is the question of the validity of the assumption that knowledge is paradoxically pushed further from our grasp. There is indeed an inverse relationship between the two variables – knowledge and confidence.

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Knowledge and confidence complement each other and are groundwork for success. Confidence is our own feelings of certainty towards knowledge on a certain topic gained through one’s personality and past experience. Knowledge gained from personal experience can also create doubt. This is a state of mind between belief and trust. It invites a sense of uncertainty and distrust, in the source and the motion, by which the knowledge is gained. Nonetheless, it would be completely wrong to assume that with high confidence, there is low knowledge and when there is low confidence with high knowledge because with knowledge there is not necessarily doubt.

Natural science and History are areas of knowledge where doubt is provisional. Natural science is a branch of science that deals with the physical world, for example; physics, chemistry, geology, and biology which can be broken up to further specialisation whereas History is the study of past events by Historians. Historians are experts on particular periods of history.

They apply their knowledge in areas and periods of history. For instance, forms of history can include social, political, diplomatic, intellectual, cultural, economic, archaeological and the classifying periods like medieval and renaissance. With their knowledge and understanding of the forms and areas of history, they are responsible to present historical truth.However, being provisional the areas of knowledge are not the same as they were a hundred years ago.

Theories and facts in history and the natural sciences are believed to be true unless doubted or otherwise contested against.  They are flexible and can change at any given time when evidence contradicts the present knowledge. Rigorous science approaches doubtful theories by theoretical or experimental approaches to derive the unknown and enhance confidence in the accuracy of their findings. Increasing data is supposed to increase the accuracy of the model however, it could be used to demonstrate the inaccuracy of the model.

When a hypothesis is disapproved; creating knowledge however, inducing questions and driving doubt.  In the pearsons biology textbook explains the falsification of the Davson. Before Davson and Danielli claimed to know that the phospholipid bilayer was sandwiched between two layers of protein.

However, when Signer Nicolson used more advance electron micrographs, he falsified Davsons theory by proving that proteins exist all around the phospholipid bilayer. The falsification of the Davson-Danielli model increased doubt. On the contrary, falsification can increase knowledge with confidence since doubt can exist as an intermediate step but with greater knowledge it will eventually resolve itself. Nicolson used existing knowledge as a building block to seek further answers which lead to his own theory.

Ignorance is bliss. Ignorance is the condition of being uneducated, unaware or uniformed. Some people who are ignorant tend to overestimate their abilities regardless of the implications of the unknown. Whereas educated people are less likely to, because they also know what they don’t know and are not willing to take a risk. To what extent is ignorance bliss?  Depending on the situation ignorance can blissful.  History is also no longer a straightforward answer as more pieces of history are unravelled. For instance in history, many Nazi soldiers, German allies and even Germans living near concentration camps feared the same actions happening to them and played the role of ignorance is bliss during the Holocaust.

They ignored the torment towards the jew in order to save themselves. However, the on the other side of the world people were naive to Hitler’s action until it was discovered otherwise by the British. Acquiring knowledge is analogous to exploring void of ignorance. Everyone of us are constraint in certain set of pre existing knowledge but reality is far beyond it, instill in our realm of ignorance. Therefore, by increasing our knowledge we voyage more into alienated ignorance which eventually leads to question our pre existing knowledge and one answer leading to another question. The more we know, the more we realise how much more there is to learn and our doubt increases. In natural science, a scientist can postulate models and theories. Hence, assuming the existence of the unobservable.

For instance let’s take electrons. They cannot be seen, therefore scientists will use something observable which coordinates with electrons, to explain the phenomena. They scientifically justify the phenomenon with pre existing knowledge and use of deductive reasoning.Ordinarily it  is expected our knowledge increase as we learn new things. However, there is a possibility that the increase in knowledge can increase in doubt as the knowledge question states. This all depends on how the knower reasons the value of the knowledge. Is the ability to ask new questions simply increased ignorance or increased doubt? Over time we learn something new and knowledge obtained in a subject gained an understanding in the area of knowledge, allowing ourselves to question shared knowledge, arguments because as I am confident in the knowledge of the subject enough to doubt other people. On the other hand, a gain in knowledge is not always purposeful, significant people believe what they read due to the source or are influenced by anti parties and do not doubt the knowledge presented.

In history there is no model answer and more than one explanation. Having more than one explanation with greater knowledge, does not increase doubt but it increases our acceptance of more knowledge. It makes us confident that there is more than one answer and to look at things with a different perspective but this can lead people with a one set mind to only having one answer and humanly drive to have an answer. Physics is a subject discipline with knowledge that is shared. Many have access to it and can contribute to it.

Much of the work done is by teams of people building on existing knowledge. While individuals can and do contribute to this body of knowledge, the work of individuals is subject to group processes including peer review and replication of experimental results before it becomes part of the corpus.In conclusion, due to the broadness and ambiguity of the knowledge areas of Science and History, it is impossible to accurately evaluate the relationship of confidence and doubt towards knowledge by simply doubting something there is a drive to towards acquiring knowledge and allowing room for new knowledge.

Doubt is however, not the key to increasing knowledge and eventually leading to an increase in confidence but instead it creates an opportunity to delve into the unknown and further explore possibilities.Bibliographyhttp://tom.spiglanin.com/2012/03/knowledge-has-to-be-shared-to-have-value/https://www.wired.com/2009/01/st-thompson-14/


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