Beliefs about our world, and what is valuable definitely play a great role in influencing the pursuit of knowledge. Man does not typically pursue anything that is worthless. However, sometimes we gain knowledge without pursuing it, so in this case belief does not influence us, unless we choose not to believe the new knowledge. Value is a subjective thing, but when someone deems something as valuable, it has some meaning to that someone. If I say that purity is valuable, I say it is valuable because I like things that are unadulterated. The pursuit of knowledge is humanity's constant crusade to come to new great truths that are hopefully valuable. In this essay, I will examine how beliefs about the world, and what is valuable within it, affect the pursuit of knowledge in different areas of knowledge.
In the area of the arts, beliefs about what is valuable influence the pursuit of knowledge greatly.
In the visual arts value used to be placed on realism. What was valuable to the artist of the past was to make a piece of art that corresponded exactly to hoe things really looked. For example, Albrecht Duerer was a member of the renaissance, and one of the elements valuable in the renaissance was realism. If one looks at any of Duerer's pieces, it is obvious that realism was important to him. To some of the modern artist bringing about emotion from the viewer is important. When Picasso painted Guernica, it was valuable to him to evoke an emotional response from the viewer.
In language arts, the beliefs of the artist also influence the pursuit of knowledge. Some writers write in order to educate the reader about a subject that is of ethical importance. One that demonstrates this is Uncle Tom's Cabin. In this book,