Showing posts from January, 2021

The specialist is dead – long live the specialist!

How the nature of specialisation has changed. We are familiar with the ever-growing number of specialisms and specialists which seem to saturate the modern world. They are nothing new, of course. Ever since man came down from the trees, there have been specialists – hunters, fishers, cooks, warriors, healers. And in the modern world, specialists play a vital role. We would, for example, be in a dreadful place without the scientists who specialise in developing vaccines. On a slightly more prosaic level, I would much rather have a tooth removed by a qualified dentist than his or her predecessor, the notorious barber-surgeon.   Specialists for everything? It is hard to argue against the fact of specialisation. Through history it is specialists who held the reins of power. For centuries it was soldiers, then in the middle ages it was lawyers. And because most lawyers were clerics, power rested with the church, an institution that specialised in wielding earthly power as well a