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To the Best of Our Knowledge: Scientific Revolution Radio/TV Program

To the Best of Our Knowledge: Scientific Revolution

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Publisher's Summary

In this hour, is science really the realm of free inquiry, open to every good idea? Controversial biologist Rupert Sheldrake says modern science is mired in various dogmas - boundaries you're not supposed to cross, at least if you value your job and your reputation.

Next, why do new scientific ideas suddenly catch on and change how we see the world? Fifty years ago, Thomas Kuhn called this a "paradigm shift." University of Wisconsin historian of science Tom Broman reflects on Kuhn's influence, and we hear excerpts from his landmark book, The Structure of Scientific Revolutions.

Then, the clay tablets found at the ancient Greek palace of Knossos were filled with tiny pictograms, one of the strangest languages ever discovered. New York Times reporter Margalit Fox tells the story of Linear B - and the obsessed, tragic lives of the two people who devoted their lives to cracking the code.

After that, cultural historian Stephen Greenblatt tells a remarkable story - how an ancient poem by Lucretius was rediscovered in a medieval monastery, and then helped launch the Scientific Revolution. We also hear an excerpt from Lucretius' poem On the Nature of Things.

And finally, Daphne Sheldrick grew up on a farm in Kenya, raised orphaned animals and later became co-warden of Tsavo National Park. She talks about her love of elephants - and the wonders of African wildlife. [Broadcast Date: April 24, 2013]

Listen to The Structure of Scientific Revolutions by Thomas Kuhn.

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