holism

(noun) The principle that the whole is greater than the sum of its parts and a part cannot be understood independent of the whole.

Audio Pronunciation: (ho·lism)

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Usage Notes:

  • Holism is more common in the social sciences than the natural sciences.
  • Reductionism is the opposite of holism.
  • Research methods are often viewed as holistic (qualitative) or reductionistic (quantitative).
  • Variant form: wholism
  • Also called holistic theory.
  • A (noun) holist views society (adverb) holistically from a (adjective) holistic perspective.

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