Tag: Science

Our Mothers, Ourselves

I intended to begin with a personal admission. “I didn’t like being pregnant,” I was going to write, before describing the bodily discomforts (hypersalivation!) and psychic stresses (due date during ...

Unsex the Lab

Kit Owens, the protagonist of Megan Abbott’s Give Me Your Hand, is a postdoc in the research lab of academic rock star Dr. Lena Severin; Severin has just received a prestigious research grant when Kit’s ...

The World in a Blot of Ink

What might this be? A moth, a bat, a winged musical conductor, a spaceship? Whatever you may see, you are also looking at Card I of the Rorschach test ...

Science and the Wolf

Once upon a time there was Science. Pure of heart, untainted by the kingdom’s societal structures or geopolitical context, Science was simply Science: an apolitical quest for objective truth and beauty. ...

Losing Their Religion

Rarely do we pity the pious Victorian patriarch. Why should we sympathize with the privileged men who stoutly believed that God had placed them at the apex of a “Great Chain of Being”? One of the ...

Too Bad About the Trees

This is the latest installment of our new blog series, An Engineer Reads a Novel.   Heat and Light, Jennifer Haigh’s fifth novel, highlights the complexity, dirtiness, and danger of the labor of ...

Where do Morals Come From?

The social sciences have an ethics problem. No, I am not referring to the recent scandals about flawed and fudged data in psychology and political science.1 I’m talking about the failure of the ...

The Inventor of Nature

In 1869 the centennial of Alexander von Humboldt’s birth was celebrated around the world, including in New York City, where bands and speakers gathered in Central Park to honor his legacy. He was ...

Speaking in Science

Some of today’s most provocative scientific tools are being built to do science themselves. IBM’s Watson, for instance, is being developed to sift through data at volumes far exceeding the capability ...