Definition of consilience in US English:



  • Agreement between the approaches to a topic of different academic subjects, especially science and the humanities.

    • ‘In general, I use it to describe the comparisons of independent outcomes in search of inductive consilience.’
    • ‘So far, consilience has been a one-way argument: a demonstration of what science has to offer the humanities.’
    • ‘He, too, wants a consilience, not just of all knowledge but especially of all knowledge about humans.’
    • ‘Lately I've been circling back to the large issue of consilience, the notion that there is a unity of the sciences through a network of cause and effect explanations in physics, biology and even the lower reaches of the social sciences.’
    • ‘This ignores the consilience factor: the vast amount of detail from natural history that is compatible with the idea that evolution actually took place.’
    • ‘Worked out first in his geology, the argument from consilience was brought to bear most productively and famously in his demonstration of the truth of evolution, and of natural selection's role.’
    • ‘He understands consilience - the power of corroboration from different domains of understanding.’
    • ‘For once, the words, ‘new science,’ on a book cover may be deserved and consilience may emerge not from biology but from physics.’
    • ‘That is, Darwin was applying Whewell's method of consilience, or inference to the best explanation, though he probably did not buy into the philosophical basis (idealistic rationalism) that inspired Whewell.’
    • ‘This lucrative sub-industry has further blossomed in recent years due to efforts made by the wealthy founder of the Templeton investment fund, Sir John Templeton, to find harmony and consilience between science and religion.’
    • ‘So to some degree consilience may be possible, but only by clearly recognizing the great differences between science and religion.’
    • ‘Healthy societies require a certain degree of consilience between cultural, economic, and political power.’
    • ‘They practice the consilience they recommend to others.’
    • ‘This is why the most compelling answers come from the consilience of genetic and fossil evidence.’
    • ‘He called this approach consilience, or how consistent independent lines of evidence are with each other.’
    • ‘Adherence to consilience demands that all the evidence be brought to bear, and that other possible causes might exist, yet to be found.’
    compatibility, consistency, conformity, match, balance, consonance, rapport, parallelism, congruity
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Mid 19th century: from con- + Latin -silient-, -siliens ‘jumping’ (as in resilient- resilient), after concurrent.