¨Agree to Disagree.¨ A phrase coined in the early 1700´s that can still be heard today when two parties reach an impasse in discussion. When disagreement occurs, discovery follows. Discovery strengthens knowledge.
Robust knowledge can be identified as information or an understanding that is shared or has repeatedly shown itself to be provable. The term ¨robust¨ classifies the knowledge of something as practical or useful on a recurring basis. We can use shared knowledge as something that is generally known , but it can be disproven.
In the original statement, ¨Robust knowledge requires both consensus and disagreement.¨, raises a distinct red flag by using the words ¨requires¨ and ¨both¨. These terms restricts the statement by stating that to have robust knowledge, you are required to have both agreement and disagreement. That being said, how can consensus and disagreement overlap with each other? Robust knowledge requires both consensus and disagreement to create a variance in artistic media, as well as push for historical development. Without the disagreement in interpretation of artistic theories, such as Expressive Theory, majority of artistic pieces in poetry would be similar- lacking depth and variety.
Art Theories are established by community consensus and acceptance to dictate values, general theories, and rules. Consensus on artistic value can be found in both a subjective view and an objective perspective which relies on theories and rules- such as formalism, a study that analyzes a form of artistic media based on composition and visual aesthetic without any relation to the potential meaning or cultural/environmental context. In contrast, there is the expressive theory. Expressive theory analyzes a work of artistic media in a subjective lense, focusing on the artist attempt at expression a worldview, meaning, or personality. Subjective value is based on personal preference. It is here that disagreement can be found. For instance, vegan street performance/street art has a high value in regards to expressive theories. Performance art around the subject of veganism is noted in the art community for being full of expression and effectively informing the audience on the subject of animal safety they so choose.
While I agree with the expressionist theory on veganism street performances, I believe it lacks in formalism. I think the presentation is classless, its value is practically nonexistent in my subjective value, along with classical value. I know that that value of art does not work for me, so when I go to create art I will differ from them and design something that performs higher in the formalist theory- thus further contributing to a variety of artistic media. History is another subject that relies on consensus and disagreement for robust knowledge. When there is disagreement about a particular event, say a revisionist interpretation on World War II or- as I will get in to shortly- pieces of information that do not line up, as found when investigating The Rape of Nanking.
History can be altered and influence by national politics for countries, in this case Japan, who wish to manipulate their youth and citizens towards a certain ideology. They may also do this if they wish to change how they may be viewed internationally. Whether or not the information is accepted by the student or citizen will vary from person to person. One may not believe everything that is being taught to them, whether it clashes with their morals or something they had been taught in the past.
This will lead to disagreement, furthering discourse in of the history field. That being said, in order for a piece of information to be taught in schools, it must be accepted as a truth through consensus. If one disagrees with the consensus, it forces the person who is questioning to dive further into the specific event. Through this, you will achieve multiple views, the more people who question and research, the more input you will have, expanding your diversity of perspectives. This can contribute to our knowledge now, getting placed with robust knowledge. When it comes to establishing robust knowledge, there is innate value in understanding and accepting the counter to an argument.
Disagreements are the foundation to exploration, resulting in a well balanced and robust foundation. Being able to view a piece of information through your ¨counters¨ eyes entails a more thorough recognition and judgement, rather than accepting consensus with a mere thought. For instance, when artists get together in expositions to appreciate and evaluate other forms of media than their own, they provide critiques and share their interpretations on artistic value, through their understanding of art theories, with their varied backgrounds and beliefs. This process provokes artistic value controversies deliberating on the finer details of artistic theories, in some cases may result in a new artistic theory. Historical deliberations involve deeper disagreements, as the content they may be discussing could literally change the course of history, in regards to what is to be considered the most reliable and verified truth. Discussions may cover the interpretation of data, how the data collector and interpreter may be subjective or partial, the availability of conclusive evidence, and how partial the evidence may be to explaining the desired subject. History evolves because of the disagreement historians have, by challenging ideas and previous assumptions they are able to discover new ways to better interpret, analyze, and record data eventually bringing us closer to the truth.