Suspension of disbelief is a theatre construct that allows playwrights to write outrageous stories and/or story ideas for dramatic convention with few arguments of incongruity by critics since any out of character behaviour or incredible feats/events can be excused by willing suspension of disbelief. The term “willing suspension of disbelief” was coined by Samuel Taylor Coleridge, who believed that  to enjoy a story in any medium, it fell on the reader and not the writer to make sense of the secondary reality. For example when watching a film the viewer chooses to ignore the fact that the characters all look identical to the real actors playing them and thus, their other characters. For example, Jack Reacher, Ethan Hunt and Maverick all look identical since they are all played by Tom Cruise but we choose to forget this to better enjoy the shows we are watching. The inverse is also true in the case of the James Bond films. In these films,  the titular character is played by a total of eight different actors who all look noticeably different from each other. Even more jarring is the fact that every supporting actor who continues to play their own character in the film series continues to do so in spite of a change to the lead actor, meaning that every character but James Bond ages while the lead role is just replaced by an endless slew of young men. Most people ignore this fact in favour of enjoying the story, an example of willing suspension of disbelief. “It is willing suspension of disbelief that for the moment constitutes poetic faith.” (Coleridge, 1907) This poetic faith allows the author to weave outrageous tales that the viewer chooses to read without question. This allows for diverse and creative storytelling taking place in the real world. While this freedom of creativity allows for a lot of variety, it also can cause problems. For example, while many interesting elements can be introduced it can also cause the story to become bloated and unbelievable. There is a fine line between the improbable and impossible, and suspension of disbelief is meant only to excuse the impossible.As such, it does not seem like  suspension of disbelief belongs in any other areas of knowledge; it is not the responsibility of someone reading a study to make sense of it but rather it is the job of the researcher to make the reasons for running the test as clear as possible. However,  it may be necessary to compromise on an answer without proof as is the case with Mathematical axioms and recorded histories. Where scrutiny and the principle of Occam’s Razor are used to find the response with the least assumptions, there will not always be accurate answers. This would be especially prevalent in history where strange things can happen and events are not held to the same logical rules that math or science must adhere to. In history the place of suspension of disbelief is less clear. Early historian Herodotus would often record everyone’s descriptions of history despite how outrageous some reports were but his method called for suspension of disbelief when recording history. However, his method was heavily disputed by historians such as Thucydides who referred to him as the master of nonsense. Thucydides’ philosophy was to record history only if it was coherent and the facts added up. Thucydides’ method allows for a more accurate and coherent history. An argument for Herodotus’ approach can still be made as his method allows for a lot of unbiased information collection. However, when fully writing out history, his method is not useful in making a coherent and accurate reflection of history. While he is known as the father of history many critics refer to to Herodotus as the “father of lies” (Plutarch, date unknown)  believing his recorded histories to be little less than tall tales and urban legends. Plutarch’s On The Malice of Herodotus is an essay that heavily critiques Herodotus’ prejudice and misrepresentation of histories. This essay however is often dismissed as part of Plutarch’s “fanatic bias in favor of the Greek cities; they can do no wrong.” (R.H. Barrow, 1967) Herodotus’ recorded histories in reality are most often correct and coherent despite his methods. An example of this would be his recorded histories of fox-sized ants that left gold behind when they dug in reality they were marmots but this is a translation error, Herodotus did not record incorrect information; Herodotus fell victim to communication difficulties which is not something that happens exclusively in his method. As miscommunication is common in all methods of recording knowledge.  Despite this Herodotus’ method would allow for more inconsistencies and falsehoods to obscure the truth of history even if the deception is unintentional because many assumptions are made in this method. As such, this form of recording history relies on willing suspension of disbelief since everyone’s perspective is voiced with no filter or measure to remove the impossibly exaggerated elements of oral histories.Most modern historians would side with Thucydides’ method, which is a more streamlined and pragmatic approach of recording history as opposed to Herodotus’ dogmatic approach of recording every account. His philosophy of recorded history stressed the importance of thorough enquiries of all sources and that everything must be fact checked since either through faulty memory or personal bias, first hand accounts can be unreliable. This method ensures a more accurate and unbiased record of history. This method is also more time consuming and creates more work for the recorder. However, if it ensures a more accurate historical account that fits with Occam’s razor then this extra time and work is justified. Which means willing suspension of disbelief is actually unnecessary in the study of histories through the use of occam’s razor to ensure more streamlined histories with fewer assumptions. Thus eliminating the need to suspend disbelief when recording history and in history as a whole. Meaning that in history suspension of disbelief is not necessary since occam’s razor can be used in its place.In mathematics suspension of disbelief is used in the most fundamental areas of mathematics such as axioms. While, most of math is proven through calculations and equations, axioms are just assumed to be true. Though this seems paradoxical and self-contradictory there are very few axioms and they are used for basic definition purposes.Some of these axioms are used for the most basic of mathematics like x=x and the empty set axiom. Which states that a set with no values exist. Though these are unprovable the math based around them are accurate and do work in the real world enabling people to calculate for “x” and find sets of zero. Which proves the usefulness and desirability to have these axioms that allow people to do mathematics and calculations. By assuming that these axioms are true without any evidence disbelief is suspended. As disbelief is often defeated with facts and evidence in the case of axioms assumptions are made to suspend any disbelief.Felix Klein a german mathematician was a staunch  advocate of axioms. In his own investigations of mathematical groups with Sophus Lie he had come to the conclusion that groups could be defined as “systems of operations of which any combination belongs to the system”. He later expanded on this by adding two criteria to groups (presence of a neutral element and associativity), he found these by using four other axioms and making his criteria “axiomatized”, he would go on to state that the work done was more accurate after using axioms than when he and Lie originally did it. However there are almost no arguments against axioms since they are so clearly useful and within the system of mathematics there is no need to prove basic definitions. The only requirement for using these assumed-true definitions is to use them in a logical manner and not make huge leaps in logic Which proves the value of axioms in mathematics and the necessity of suspension of disbelief since axioms are involved. Between Herodotus and Thucydides and the axioms of mathematics an argument can be made for the use of suspension of disbelief in areas of knowledge outside of theatre, the strongest of these arguments being for the use of it in mathematics in the form of axioms and axiomatic definitions. Suspension of disbelief has a place not only in theatre and the arts but in factual areas of knowledge as well. Fact gathering subjects such as history should combining willing suspension of disbelief and occam’s razor to find the truth that exists within different perspectives. Willing suspension of disbelief is useful not only in theatre and arts but also in factual areas of knowledge. By suspending our beliefs we are able to move past trivialities and move on to working on more important and complex questions.

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