The Human Condition
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Existentialism is a term applied to the work of a number of late 19th- and 20th-century philosophers who, despite profound doctrinal differences, [ 1 ] [ 2 ] [ 3 ] shared the belief that philosophical thinking begins with the human subject—not merely the thinking subject, but the acting, feeling, living human individual. [ 4 ] In existentialism, the individual's starting point is characterized by what has been called "the existential attitude", or a sense of disorientation and confusion in the face of an apparently meaningless or absurd world. [ 5 ] Many existentialists have also regarded traditional systematic or academic philosophies, in both style and content, as too abstract and remote from concrete human experience. [ 6 ] [ 7 ] Søren Kierkegaard is generally considered to have been the first existentialist philosopher, [ 8 ] [ 9 ] [ 10 ] though he himself did not use the term Existentialism.
Sociobiology is a field of scientific study which is based on the assumption that social behavior has resulted from evolution and attempts to explain and examine social behavior within that context. Often considered a branch of biology and sociology , it also draws from ethology , anthropology , evolution , zoology , archaeology , population genetics , and other disciplines. Within the study of human societies , sociobiology is very closely allied to the fields of Darwinian anthropology , human behavioral ecology and evolutionary psychology . Sociobiology investigates social behaviors, such as mating patterns, territorial fights, pack hunting, and the hive society of social insects.
Anthropology ( pron.: / æ n θ r ɵ ˈ p ɒ l ə dʒ i / ) is the "science of humanity ." [ 1 ] It has origins in the humanities , the natural sciences , and the social sciences . [ 2 ] The term " anthropology " is from the Greek anthrōpos ( ἄνθρωπος ), "man", understood to mean humankind or humanity, and -logia (-λογία), "discourse" or "study." Since the work of Franz Boas and Bronisław Malinowski in the late 19th and early 20th centuries, anthropology has been distinguished from other social sciences by its emphasis on in-depth examination of context, cross-cultural comparisons , and the importance it places on participant-observation , or long-term, experiential immersion in the area of research.
Psychology is an academic and applied discipline that involves the scientific study of mental functions and behaviors . [ 1 ] [ 2 ] Psychology has the immediate goal of understanding individuals and groups by both establishing general principles and researching specific cases, [ 3 ] [ 4 ] and by many accounts it ultimately aims to benefit society. [ 5 ] [ 6 ] In this field, a professional practitioner or researcher is called a psychologist and can be classified as a social , behavioral , or cognitive scientist . Psychologists attempt to understand the role of mental functions in individual and social behavior , while also exploring the physiological and neurobiological processes that underlie certain cognitive functions and behaviors. Psychologists explore concepts such as perception , cognition , attention , emotion , phenomenology , motivation , brain functioning , personality , behavior , and interpersonal relationships .
Sociology is the scientific study of human society [ 1 ] and its origins, development, organizations, and institutions . [ 2 ] It is a social science which uses various methods of empirical investigation [ 3 ] and critical analysis [ 4 ] to develop a body of knowledge about human social activity, structures, and functions. A goal for many sociologists is to conduct research which may be applied directly to social policy and welfare, while others focus primarily on refining the theoretical understanding of social processes. Subject matter ranges from the micro level of individual agency and interaction to the macro level of systems and the social structure . [ 5 ] The traditional focuses of sociology include social stratification , social class , culture , social mobility , religion , secularization , law , and deviance .
Philosophy is the study of general and fundamental problems, such as those connected with reality , existence , knowledge , values , reason , mind , and language . [ 1 ] [ 2 ] Philosophy is distinguished from other ways of addressing such problems by its critical, generally systematic approach and its reliance on rational argument . [ 3 ] In more casual speech, by extension, "philosophy" can refer to "the most basic beliefs, concepts, and attitudes of an individual or group". [ 4 ] The word "philosophy" comes from the Ancient Greek φιλοσοφία ( philosophia ), which literally means "love of wisdom". [ 5 ] [ 6 ] [ 7 ] The introduction of the terms "philosopher" and "philosophy" has been ascribed to the Greek thinker Pythagoras . [ 8 ] A "philosopher" was understood as a word which contrasted with " sophist ".
Theology (from Greek Θεός meaning "God" and λόγος , -logy , meaning "study of") is the systematic and rational study of concepts of God and its influences and of the nature of religious truths, or the learned profession acquired by completing specialized training in religious studies , usually at a university or school of divinity or seminary . [ 1 ] [ edit ] Definition Augustine of Hippo defined the Latin equivalent, theologia , as "reasoning or discussion concerning the Deity"; [ 2 ] Richard Hooker defined "theology" in English as "the science of things divine ". [ 3 ] The term can, however, be used for a variety of different disciplines or fields of study. [ 4 ] Theologians use various forms of analysis and argument ( philosophical , ethnographic , historical , spiritual and others) to help understand , explain , test, critique , defend or promote any of myriad religious topics . Theology might be undertaken to help the theologian: