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"To comprehend is almost to justify..."

For Levi, any attempt to “understand” or “comprehend” either chemical reactions or Nazi genocide risked the error of generalizing about the “almost-the-same”: “What we commonly mean by the verb ‘to understand’ coincides with ‘to simplify.’… The desire for simplification is justified; simplification itself is not always. It is a working hypothesis that is useful as long as it is recognized for what it is.”