If Science is the Body, then Art is the Soul

a balanced approach to education

Laura Sheridan
3 min readOct 16, 2020


Photo by Joshua Earle on Unsplash

Science. Facts. Discovery. Technology.

How did it all start?

We can only speculate. At some point, one of our ancient ancestors, finding it difficult to drag a fallen bison back to the cave, came up with the idea of the wheel. Ideas have been rolling in ever since.

Science has built the world. To a great extent, the results have been beneficial. From the printing press, the steam engine and the computer right through to space travel, we have luxuries Ugg could never have dreamed of.

When I was teaching at the homework centre, the students were all keen on studying Science and Maths. Respectable subjects. Serious subjects. These would get you Somewhere.

When it came to Literature, Music or Art, their attitude was less enthusiastic. Shelley? Landseer? Mozart? What was the point. These were throw-away subjects, of some interest perhaps, but useless in the long run.

How did they come to this conclusion? The Education System. Over the years it has subtly but effectively promoted the sciences over the arts. We do need more scientists, that’s true, but are we in danger of becoming unbalanced?

We also need The Arts.

All right, you might say — what’s so great about poetry? A few arty-farty words set out in an arrangement of lines.

If that’s so, then a sunset is a blur of orangey-red sky, love is a bunch of pheromones and the stars are merely faraway boiling suns.

Poems are written to arouse an emotion, to make us examine ourselves, to allow us to revel in the sheer beauty of a phrase. In ‘Angela’s Ashes’ by Frank McCourt (a great read, by the way) the author describes Shakespeare’s poetry as ‘jewels in my mouth.’

We were travelling in the car once and I was reading a poem by Carol Ann Duffy. My husband asked me something and I literally could not answer him. I was too choked up with emotion by the beautiful words I’d just read. This is the one — and it’s just done it to me again!



Laura Sheridan

I write to entertain, explain…and leave a tickle of laughter in your brain.