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history of science



  • UFOs and the Boundaries of Science

    by Greg Eghigian

    The history of the UFO phenomenon is a lens on to the process by which scientists police the bounds of respectable inquiry. 



  • The Feminist Past History Can't Give Us

    by Paula Findlen

    "What it really meant to be a woman of science three centuries ago is not so easily conscripted into contemporary narratives of feminist liberation."



  • Looking Beyond the Female Firsts of Science History

    by By Anna Reser and Leila McNeill

    While celebrating the pioneering achievements of women in science is worthwhile, it shouldn't substitute for close scrutiny of how scientific communities include or exclude participants and how society's gender and racial norms shape the work of scientists in that society. 


  • Can Space Exploration Restore American Faith in Science?

    by John Baick

    The 60th anniversary of the first manned space flight is time to reflect on the devolution of space exploration from an expression of science as a public and collective enterprise to a vanity project of fame-seeking billionaires.



  • Our Greatest Libraries are Melting Away

    by David Farrier

    Ice core samples from the Greenland shelf are a physical archive of the long sweep of human history, and demonstrate the connections of humanity's past and future. 



  • When Black Humanity is Denied

    by Edna Bonhomme

    Enlightenment institutions – the prison, science, and asylums – are organized through binaries that draw boundaries between people who are and are not able to exercise freedom. Black artistic work supports Black freedom by challenging those boundaries. 



  • What Attacks on Science Get Wrong

    by Andrew Jewett

    Reductive diagnoses of a "war on science" ignore the specific political and cultural stakes of controversies around vaccination, climate, or creationism. 



  • How Americans Came to Distrust Science

    by Andrew Jewett

    Scientists and their supporters cannot overcome the current moment of hostility toward their profession and rejection of their expertise unless they confront the cultural history of skepticism toward science, in both conservative and liberal forms. 



  • Reckoning with Our Mistakes

    "If Scientific American is to help shape a more just and hopeful future, we must learn from the arrogance and exclusions of our past. Not just because it is right, but because the power of scientific knowledge is stronger for it."



  • How Racism Is Shaping the Coronavirus Pandemic

    An interview with historian Evelynn Hammonds on the relationship between African-Americans and epidemics in American history, from the eighteenth century to the present day.