History

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Category archives for History

A is for Average

On Becoming a Domestic and Laboratory Goddess, Dr. Isis solicits hypotheses for the increase in the number of A’s awarded to students at American universities. In 1960′s, one out of six students got an A (and C used to be the most Common). Now an A is most common, and the number of C’s (and…

Celebrating Henrietta Lacks

On February 2, The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks by ScienceBlogger Rebecca Skloot was officially published. If you haven’t heard, everyone who has read this book has wonderful things to say. Dr. Isis on On Becoming a Domestic and Laboratory Goddess declares it “the single best piece of non-fiction I have ever read. It is…

Sirius History & the Future of NASA

On Starts With A Bang, Ethan Siegel presents us with an interstellar mystery. As the single brightest star in the sky, Sirius has been well-known since ancient times. But while Sirius is unmistakably blue, several historical records describe Sirius as red. Two thousand years is not enough time for a normal star to change color,…

Inspiring One Another

We inspire each other with our everyday actions and attitudes–monkey see, monkey do. On The Frontal Cortex, Jonah Lehrer describes an experiment in which individuals who observed their peers choosing carrots over cookies were more likely to make the same thoughtful choice themselves. Jonah explains that self-control “contains a large social component” and plays a…

Anything But Social Darwinism

On The Primate Diaries, Eric Michael Johnson deconstructs “social Darwinism” in order to “raise some questions about the usefulness of [the term] and the way it has been applied.” The concept has little to do with Charles Darwin, but it has often been misapplied to his idea of natural selection. Instead, social Darwinism springs from…

Galileo, Knowledge and Power

Galileo transformed Western knowledge, but the Catholic Church vehemently opposed his “heretical” heliocentric observations. Inspired by author Thomas Dixon, ScienceBloggers debate whether the Church’s beef with Galileo was motivated by political power or by the competing principles of science and religion. On EvolutionBlog, Jason Rosenhouse writes that while the conflict was “played out in the…

In honor of Halloween this weekend, we scared up some classic spooky ScienceBlogs posts. Brian Switek of Laelaps discusses ghosts, UFOs, psychics, witchcraft and other “paranormal rot” many people use to explain “rather ordinary phenomena.” On SciencePunk, Frank Swain contemplates the mathematical improbability of vampires due to sure vampire population explosion. However, Frank also points…

Most Americans are familiar with Darwin’s theory of evolution by natural selection, but less well known is his personal struggle with the conflicting ideologies of science and religion. A new film from producer Jeremy Thomas, Creation, aims to tell the story of Darwin’s life through the cinematic lens—but Americans who would pay the box office…

In the latest installment of Bloggingheads.tv Science Saturdays, ScienceBloggers Greg Laden and David Dobbs discuss David’s book Reef Madness: Charles Darwin, Alexander Agassiz, and the Meaning of Coral.

The Buzz: 40 Years After Apollo

Four decades ago, Neil Armstrong became the first person to step foot on the Moon. His “one giant leap for mankind” is one of the most recognizable achievements in the history of American science. The success of the Apollo 11 mission represented not only the possibilities of space exploration, but of the entire field of…