The article seeks to answer a number of questions about the appeal of slashits many meanings, and the context in which it thrives. It utilizes many quotes from fans in The Terra Nostra Underground and Strange Bedfellowstwo apazines active in the mid s. Where does slash come from? Does it originate in the series text or in the fan's reading of it?
Established by fellow biologist George Romanes inthe lecture has featured a wide array of speakers, from Theodore Roosevelt and Winston Churchill to Saul Bellow.
Here are some excerpts from my address. I wish to explore with you the dangers that arise when science, politics, and religion find themselves at cross-purposes on issues of importance to the future.
I speak as a scientist, a teacher, and a university administrator who believes that for the most part, the contributions that science has made in expanding our understanding of the natural world over the past century have contributed to dramatic improvements in the well-being and the quality of life of most individuals living today.
All of this progress, and the economic prosperity it has created, arose from public and private investments in science and technology in many countries. The confidence that society placed in scientific progress as the path to prosperity was reflected for decades in everything from surveys that identified science as among the most respected professions to the yearly generous allocation of tax dollars to basic and applied research.
In return for this broad support, society rightfully expected the discovery of new knowledge that would lead to better lives for everyone. That potential for conflict seems greater now than at any time in my career, and I would like to explore with you today some underlying causes by focusing on two distinctively American debates that have received considerable attention in the press over the last several years: On January 14,President George W.
Bush announced major new goals for the publicly funded exploration of space, most prominently, the goals of sending humans back to the moon by and eventually to Mars.
The two programs in human-based space exploration, the International Space Station and the Space Shuttle Program, are both in trouble. The Space Station, originally announced by President Ronald Reagan in for completion in 10 years, is dramatically behind schedule and over budget, and the Space Shuttle Program, just beginning to recover from the Columbia shuttle disaster, is slated for mothballing in The announcement also came at one of the most extraordinarily productive times in the history of astronomy and cosmology, when explorations with satellite space telescopes such as the Hubble Telescope, the Wilkinson Microwave Anisotrophy Probe, and the ground-based Sloan Digital Sky Survey, as well as unmanned space missions like Voyager, are providing us with breathtaking insight into the structure of the universe and our solar system.
These discoveries comprise a golden age of space exploration—but of a very different kind than President Bush is proposing. This highlights a tension that has always existed between the scientific community and the political process whereby priorities are set. Ideally, priorities should reflect the relative importance and potential impact of competing questions, coupled with a dispassionate assessment of the likelihood that they can be answered by the proposed experimental or theoretical approach.
The astrophysics community has evolved a unique procedure in which the leaders come together once every 10 years, under the auspices of the National Academy of Sciences, and, through an inclusive and collegial process, establish priorities for the next decade.
The small size and relative cohesiveness of the field, together with the large price tags attached to individual experiments, drove the evolution of the decadal process.
The resulting recommendations are conveyed to NASA for consideration, but they have no binding authority. An Integrated Exploration Strategy. It was a comprehensive list of projects and missions that included everything but human exploration.
They may have made a military decision that establishing American dominance in space is strategically important, or an economic decision that mining the natural resources in space will be essential to the future prosperity of the United States.
Then, as now, the scientific community was highly skeptical of the utility of the Space Station, most especially its scientific value, and was concerned that support for the station would preclude support for what in their view were significantly higher scientific priorities. The Space Station has foundered for many reasons, including the failure of all four administrations who oversaw it to support it fully.
But a lesson I would draw from this case study is that top-down, politically driven science projects, especially those that will be enormously expensive, need to be clear about their goals at the outset and are unlikely to be successful in scientific terms unless they have the support of scientists who understand the challenges and likely benefits of the undertaking.
If cosmologists are deciphering the origins of the universe and our solar system in unprecedented ways, biologists are making enormous strides, thanks to the technology that was developed during the Human Genome Project, toward unlocking the origins of life on Earth. Yet here, too, science and politics have found themselves at loggerheads.
The power of the theory of natural selection to illuminate natural phenomena, as well as its remarkable resilience to experimental challenge over almost years, has led to its overwhelming acceptance by the scientific community.
We frequently observe such systems in cell organelles, in which the removal of one element would cause the whole system to cease functioning. To begin with, it reflects a fundamental misunderstanding of how evolution works. Nature is the ultimate tinkerer, constantly co-opting one molecule or process for another purpose.
This is spurred on by frequent duplications in the genome, which occur at random. Mutations can accumulate in the extra copy without disrupting the pre-existing function, and those that are beneficial have the potential to become fixed in the population.
In other instances, entirely new functions evolve for existing proteins. This, too, reflects a basic misunderstanding about how science works, for, in fact, all scientific theories, even those that are approaching years of age, are works in progress.Posts about Modernism written by ncenegy.
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