My wife and I have disagreements about what science is. Or, more specifically, whether or not the social sciences are considered science.
She considers sociology, psychology, anthropology and any other -ology that doesn’t automatically require rubber glove chaffing, as “coffee table talk”… and then promptly remembers that my degree is in Interdisciplinary Social Sciences. A fact that doesn’t sway her opinion.
It’s my opinion that a lot of people who have a B.S. thinks they’re better than those with a B.A. because they’re full of something.
The wife has an “actual” science degree. This means she’s really good at memorizing stuff. It also means she has me read over anything she’s written. It’s usually a fair trade unless there is a “Do you remember when…?” disagreement and my handwritten leather-bound ledgers are not at my disposal.
Today, she brought home a book from the library titled, The Sociology Book: Big Ideas Simply Explained. I wasn’t sure if it was a peace offering on the long-standing discussion, or if she was really trying to understand the subject, or if the title amused her and she was hoping to use it for argument fodder. She opened page one… “Really? This is just common sense! Is this really considered science?”
I’d like to think it was a initially a peace offering in order to gain a better understanding that ended up as argument fodder. Because science laboratory-n-glove types can’t help themselves.
The best I can hope for is an acknowledgement that social science exists in the world and in exchange tell her that someday maybe gloves will be required for all research – even polls, surveys, and verbal interviews.
P.S. Maybe I can add an occasional typo or grammar error to the extremely riveting technical mumbo jumbo writing she sometimes asks me to edit for her. Except that she usually catches MY errors. Because in addition to having good memories, sciencey types are also annoyingly detail oriented.
Editor’s Note: My wife hasn’t read this yet, please excuse any errors.