In this treatise on the central role of science, John Brockman contends that science is becoming the predominant culture and scientists are taking the place of traditional intellectuals in answering the important questions facing humankind. Structured in interview format, The Third Culture
consists of 23 noted scientists discussing their theories, the nature of scientific inquiry, and their common desire to be recognized as today's intellectual leaders.
From Publishers Weekly
This set of conversational essays, distilled from interviews with 23 leading scientists, presents an engaging, unparalleled road map to the frontiers of research and speculation in evolutionary biology, genetics, artificial intelligence, psychology and physics. Biologist Stephen Jay Gould argues provocatively that evolution harbors no inevitable drive toward increasing complexity or progress. Astrophysicist Martin Rees ponders the possibility of multiple universes as well as ways to locate "dark matter," the 90% of the universe that exerts gravitational force yet is invisible and unaccounted for. Psychologist Steven Pinker defines language as an instinctual, specialized skill that develops in the child spontaneously. Philosopher Daniel Dennett views consciousness as a "virtual machine," an abstract thinking center, while, at the opposite pole, biologist Francisco Varela melds Buddhist philosophy and neuroscience in his theory of the mind as an "emergent self" shaped by interactions with its environment. Contributors include biologists Richard Dawkins and Lynn Margulis, physicists Roger Penrose and Murray Gell-Mann, cosmologists Paul Davies and Alan Guth. New York literary agent Brockman is editor of About Bateson and Doing Science. Newbridge's Library of Science, Astronomy Book Club and Natural Science Book Club and Reader's Subscription special selections.
Copyright 1995 Reed Business Information, Inc.
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