Historical Who is Who

MERTON, Robert

1910 - 2003
United States

American sociologist whose reflective analysis gave rise to notions that have become features of modern intellectual life. These include ‘focus groups and their use’, ‘role models’, ‘self-fulfilling prophecy’, ‘serendipity’,and  ‘standing on the shoulders of giants’. He identified the cultural norms which constitute modern science as universalism, ‘communism’, disinterestedness and organised scepticism. Perhaps these are equally key features of good moral education..



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