Tuesday, April 27, 2004

Richard Dawkins writes about science writing here. A couple of noteworthy comments:
"Prick your reader’s imagination with a stunning fact, or a fresh metaphor, or by turning a familiar fact dizzyingly upside down, or by filtering it through the alien lens of a Martian eye. However useful science may be, and however relevant to everyday life, that is the least important thing about it. Science is, above all, wonderful. You may write to inform. You should write to inspire.

No scientist has won the Nobel Prize for Literature. Why not? I suspect that it simply hasn’t occurred to the judges. “Literature” automatically conjures “novelist”, or “poet”. Yet, could there be a better subject for great literature than the spacetime fabric of the universe? Or than the evolution of life?"

2 comments:

math said...

Itt nem ertek egyet Dawkins-szal. A tudomanyos ismeretterjeszto muvek nem szamitanak szepirodalomnak, ne is legyenek azok. Egy tudomanyo sismeretterjeszto mu hasznalhat nehany metaforat, de mindig a pontos modelleket is le kell irnia.

Dawkins remekul ert a metaforakhoz, de vigyazni kell, nehogy a tudomanyossag rovasara menjen. A metaforak csak illusztraciok, nem a tudomany eszkozei.

zs said...

Szerintem van benne valami, ha nem is olyan egyszeru, mint ahogy azt Dawkins beallitja. A metaforak nem egyebek, mint modellek, a tudomany pedig nem egyeb, mint modellezes. S ha peldaul Dawkins esszekotete (a Devil's chaplain) irodalomnak tekintheto, akkor mert ne kaphatna o vagy a hozza hasonlok (pl. Stephen Jay Gould, aki meg kozelebb all a human kulturahoz, mint Dawkins) irodalmi Nobel dijat? Kulonosen ha a dijkioszto bizottsag nemcsak azt veszi figyelembe, hogy valaki mennyire jol banik a metaforakkal, hanem azt is, hogy azoknak milyen es mekkora 'hatasa' van?

 
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