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I shall direct myself to the question of whether the arts and the humanities, particularly the latter, would be better or worse off under an arrangement more centralized than the present one. What I shall say will reflect my experience as chairman of the endowment for 31 years, and as dean and then president of Brown University for approximately 18 years; I do not represent the administration, and I am not expressing its views.
The humanities constitute the oldest part of education, as we know it, and are, in effect, the liberal arts as they existed at the time of the foundation of our educational system. These disciplines are the newest to receive support from the Government, however. And the support is very small indeed, being restricted to funds in the endowment for the humanities, and to an even lesser extent, the Office of Education. In 1969, the endowment will have approximately $6 million to spread over its four major programs-fellowships, research, education, and public needs-plus whatever matching funds are appropriated and whatever funds come from private sources to be matched. The amounts are small compared to the sums available for the sciences.
The position of the humanities has been a fluctuating one. In higher education, the position of the humanities declined concurrently with the emergence of the sciences, and continued to decline until about 1960, when concern for the humanities began to rise again as it became apparent that science alone would not solve our problems, something the better scientists had recognized for some time.
I might interpose here to say that anything that I say that sounds like opposition to science, and to the results of science, is not directed at science. It is directed at the imbalance that exists herein a very serious way.
Mr. DADDARIO. I would expect, Dr. Keeney, that Dr. Piore would agree with you in this matter of balance, and that he would include parts of the humanities as a necessary involvement in this balance which he believes needs to be created.
Do you have any comment on that, Dr. Piore?
Dr. PIORE. There is no question in my mind that there is an imbalance between the emphasis on humanities compared to science, as far as Federal expenditures are concerned. There is no question in my mind.
Structurally, how you organize this in the Federal Government, is a difficult problem in my mind. I don't know what Dr. Keeney is going to say. He may bring this up on the surface, and I would rather wait until he finishes his remarks.
Dr. KEENEY. Accordingly, in the 1960's, we have been hearing demands for better instruction in the humanities, with greater attention to what is relevant to contemporary problems.
In practical affairs, the preoccupation with the use of the sciences, and then of the social sciences, in the solution of problems, has been such that the contribution the humanities could make was all but ignored until quite recently, and in most quarters, still is ignored. During the First World War it became apparent that scientific investigations could be used to develop many of the instruments of destruction and of industrial production that were necessary for the successful
waging of war. During the course of the Second World War, it became apparent that much of what was needed could not be obtained without support of basic science, in addition to applied science, and the Government entered into support for basic scientific research-support in which many agencies are today involved, including the Defense Department, HUD (support for social science), NASA, and so on. The National Science Foundation was founded to support pure research on the assumption that pure and applied research can be separated, which I very much doubt, and on the further assumption that the support of pure work could result in the production of more applied work, which it sometimes does.
Social scientists attempted to use the methods of the natural sciences, with some preliminary success, though it has become evident in the social as well as natural sciences that the emphasis on scientific methods and tangible reality, or what we recognize as tangible reality, has hindered efforts to cope with some abstract problems of the sort that are most difficult for society. But at any rate, at present, the sciences, technology (which is the outcome of science), and the social sciences are supported by-and are used by-many agencies of the Government. Social sciences receive some support even though the National Science Foundation and the National Endowment for the Humanities. The humanities, however, are used substantially by hardly any agency of the Government, and, as I have indicated, are supported only in a small way through the endowment and the Office of Education.
That is the situation of the humanities today, which I think should be considered in any reorganization of Government support. It is necessary to ask also, however, how the situation might be different, and how the humanities might be used.
Let me give a couple of examples. In foreign affairs, there is the obvious example of our habit of furthering representative democracy in underdeveloped countries. Little application of the cultural and political history of such areas is made in the development of policy. There are obvious difficulties in effecting representative government in a country where there is no well-established local base and where nothing politically previously has stood between the village and the central government. We have attempted to behave throughout the world as if these difficulties didn't exist, and the result is often dictatorship or totalitarianism of the right or left.
Closer to home it was assumed, until relatively recently, that Negroes made poor troops. Negroes were, for the most part, segregated into units that performed supporting tasks. During World War II, they were permitted to serve in segregated combat units, at least, and late in the war, a short of brigaded arrangement began. Now the services. are integrated.
The reason I brought this up is that the change was made because of social pressure at home, not because of examination of historical fact. The change was not made on the merits of the question, and the fact is, that in every war fought by this country in which Negroes were used in combat, Negro troops served, sometimes with distinction, and the present situation in Vietnam certainly indicates that they always could have. Historical fact was not used or the change would have come much more easily and much more quickly.
My third example is far more involved. There is considerable evidence to indicate that the central difficulty of our times is the obsolescence of at least parts of our traditional value systems. The resurrection of meaningful values will not result from scientific inquiry or from social science, but only though the philosophical and historical examination of society and of the bases of its values. Many of the values we say we hold today are based on assumptions that no longer reflect reality in contemporary society. If we are to wait for ethical principles that can be validated scientifically, however, we will wait a good longtime. In dealing with basic values, we must use the humanities, and history and philosophy in particular.
Given, then, the need to increase the use of the humanities, which we have been trying to do through the Endowment, let me take up the question of what effect the kind of centralization with which you are concerned would have on our effects.
It is proposed to place the Endowments for the Humanities and the Arts together with various science, social science, and educational programs, including an Institute for Higher Education. The agency would have Cabinet status, which I do not personally regard as very important; though I recognize that something might be gained by having a Secretary so that the views of the agency can be presented at the Cabinet level.
It is possible, also, that the centralization would result in better funding for the humanities, because the appropriations for the humanities would be attached to larger programs, and would, therefore, be somewhat sheltered. A small, isolated appropriation request coming independently to the Congress is readily attacked. Moreover, an independent agency reporting directly to the President really doesn't report to the President unless he has a strong interest; and when the need for support arises, it is often difficult to get help from a staff that has many other responsibilities. I don't believe that the proposed centralization would result in serious loss of independence to any great extent, provided that the program in the humanities would be carried out by skillful and experienced bureaucrats who believe in what they are doing and know the arts of advocacy.
One advantage of the proposed reorganization is this: It would bring activity in the sciences into closer proximity to activities in the social sciences and the humanities, and this would undoubtedly increase the infusion of value judgments into science, a process already underway, which I personally think is very valuable for science. The concept that science is free of values is one of the most obsolete with which we are burdened, and since scientific activity has a major impact. upon human life today, and will have in the future, consideration of values must enter into it. There have been many examples in recent years of scientific activity that is quite successful and that attains the objectives set for it, but which does not answer the question, "Is it worth doing?" There will be other examples in future years, and the sooner they are brought to light and examined with that question, the better.
Similarly, the proposed merger of research and educational activities into a single agency is to be commended. Education suffers when it is separated from investigation. The separation of the Office of Education
from research, except for research into education itself, has resulted in a great deal of flabbiness and difficulty in defining what is and what is not innovative.
However, the proposed separation of higher education from education at the elementary and secondary level is not to be commended in my opinion. It is from higher education that educators at the lower levels probably will increasingly have to draw means of improvement in the future. The proposed reorganization would place the Science Foundation and the Humanities Endowment in close proximity to the offices charged with fostering innovation in education, but would separate both from the secondary schools which are most in need of help.
The major difficulty educators now have with the organization of the Federal Government is that they find no place to go for funds for an entire program of education. There is educational funding for the disadvantaged. There is funding for buildings, including dormitories and student unions. But there is no place in the Government to which an undergraduate college, for example, can turn for support of an educational program designed to improve the institution across the board. This causes a number of difficulties. It is not, in the long run, beneficial to any educational institution or system to have to go to 10 places to get 10 different parts of the same thing, as is now the case, even within a single office of the Government.
It is often observed that education at the highest levels is inseparable from research. In the Government, we are dealing with all levels of education, and we need to tie together the various aspects into a single program for support of education.
My major criticism of the proposal, however, is that the reorganization would still leave a great deal to be accomplished, and very little with which to accomplish it. I do not say that centralization would injure the Government; neither do I say that it would be great advantage to the Government, or to the humanities. I do say that I doubt very much that any reorganizational steps are going to make much difference where the humanities are concerned, until the humanitiesand their uses become an important and daily part of American life. And I do think that Government activities in education, and possibly research, ought to be centralized, with particular attention to innovation in education.
Mr. DADDARIO. You and Dr. Piore, both touch on the Cabinet level and support it to varying degrees because it would give more visibility and more of an opportunity for the case to be made. How do you contemplate the present OST? How would it fit into this adjustment? Would the Cabinet level position swell into it so that you would have a Cabinet level post for one purpose? Would there be two separate people, two separate places? How does that fit in?
Dr. KEENEY. That would fit in depending a great deal on the inclinations of the President himself. Would he not decide that question, whether or not he wanted a separate adviser? If he decided he did not, I should think OST could become the planning staff of the Department.
Mr. DADDARIO. My answer is that our job is to look over the structure and develop what appears to be the very best. Obviously the President, as you have pointed out, will listen or not listen, depending on
whether he want to or not. How would we structure the situation where the best possible purpose would appear?
Dr. KEENEY. Í should think if you wanted to look at it that way, you would have OST as the planning staff of the Department.
Mr. DADDARIO. How do you feel, Dr. Piore?
Dr. PIORE. The President, I think, you know, will continue to have a science adviser. The President has an economic adviser, and there are other economic structures within the White House. OST can continue to have a coordinating function, to pull together these broad agencies that I talked about and the mission agencies.
Still some kind of coordinating function may be required. Whether you abolish OST by creating the Department, you have to be concerned how this new Department would relate to defense, to the clinical medical research that goes under the auspices of HEW, et cetera. It is not clear in my mind how to structure it, whether you keep it or whether you abolish it and give the coordinating responsibility possibly to this new Cabinet department.
It is always difficult for one Cabinet department to coordinate another department. So I come out finally that there would be continued need for the Office of Science and Technology.
You can even go a step further and say that maybe it ought to be pulled into the Bureau of the Budget with a coordinating responsibility, if you put a very large department together. There are a number of choices, and I have not thought through all the pluses and minuses for each possibility.
Dr. KEENEY. I think the number of things that are left out of your proposed department would make a coordinating office necessary in science alone.
Dr. PIORE. I think we have any number of departments that have broad policies for science, because the country just wants to do science. They ought to be pulled into it.
Mr. DADDARIO. Dr. Piore, you make a very important point. I don't recall whether it is in your formal or informal remarks. You said, in order to get the kind of support we need, that you have got to develop in the country a public policy of support of science.
Dr. Keeney seems to be touching on that same subject in a different way. He sees a great deal of flabbiness developing. The need for innovation in the Office of Education and the removability of it from research.
He says whatever is done, education and possibly research ought to be centralized with a particular attention to innovation in education. Can you correlate these by bringing together all of these disciplines so that support would be able to develop such a public feeling rather than the proliferation we have presently?
Dr. KEENEY. I think if you pull together activities concentrated on education and on the research that is a proper part of an educational institution, including the research into education itself, which very badly needs some research, and which very badly needs to be stimulated to respond more to present needs than it does, you might have two things moving in the same direction.
Mr. DADDARIO. How do you feel about that?
Dr. PIORE. You have two ways to go, and I have presented one, and Dr. Keeney another.