Quotations and Literature Forum

It is currently Thu Jul 24, 2014 3:46 am

All times are UTC - 7 hours




Post new topic Reply to topic  [ 3 posts ] 
Author Message
PostPosted: Tue May 21, 2002 5:07 am 
Offline
QuoteMaster
QuoteMaster

Joined: Wed Apr 03, 2002 5:38 am
Posts: 269
Location: Carolina coast
I've copied the following quotation from the Random Quotations collection in tribute to its author, the remarkable scientist and writer Stephen Jay Gould, who died yesterday.

"Human consciousness arose but a minute before midnight on the geological clock. Yet we mayflies try to bend an ancient world to our purposes, ignorant perhaps of the messages buried in its long history. Let us hope that we are still in the early morning of our April day."
-- Stephen Jay Gould

Ten years, when I was teaching Gould's essay "Sex, Drugs and the Extinction of the Dinosaurs," he had already begun the cancer battle, but was determined not to let it beat him. I don't have the exact quotation at my fingertips, but he said it would obscene to come so close to the millennium and not live to see it. Well, he saw the millenium and then some.

In his 1999 book Rock of Ages, Gould's dedication to his sons reads:

"For Jesse and Ethan, who will have to hold on beyond their father's watch, and who will surely improve a world with a future so honestly described by John Playfair, a great scientist and writer, who closed his Outlines of Natural Philosophy (1814) by stating (in the old subjunctive mood, where his 'were' equals our 'would be'):
'It were unwise to be sanguine, and unphilosophical to despair.'"


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject:
PostPosted: Tue May 21, 2002 1:59 pm 
Offline
Site Admin
Site Admin

Joined: Wed Apr 03, 2002 12:45 am
Posts: 497
Location: Utah
That's a shame - I am a big fan of scientists who make science approachable by mere mortals, and Gould was one of my favorites. I especially enjoyed his guest appearance on "The Simpsons" a while back.

New Scientist has a good writeup here:
http://www.newscientist.com/news/news.jsp?id=ns99992306

and here's a biography with tons of good links:
http://www.freethought-web.org/ctrl/new ... gould.html

And a couple more Gould quotations I like:

"The most important scientific revolutions all include, as their only common feature, the dethronement of human arrogance from one pedestal after another of previous convictions about our centrality in the cosmos. "

"The most erroneous stories are those we think we know best - and therefore never scrutinize or question. "

_________________
Michael Moncur
Owner and maintainer, The Quotations Page


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject:
PostPosted: Wed May 22, 2002 4:43 am 
Offline
QuoteMaster
QuoteMaster

Joined: Wed Apr 03, 2002 5:38 am
Posts: 269
Location: Carolina coast
That second link you suggested is packed with excellent information -- thanks, mgm. I also checked out some of the rest freethought-web.org because I'd never seen the site before -- it looks like a very interesting, well-conceived and executed site.


Top
 Profile  
 
Display posts from previous:  Sort by  
Post new topic Reply to topic  [ 3 posts ] 

All times are UTC - 7 hours


Who is online

Users browsing this forum: acgjbqkjv, bmhgkomus, dddllsabz, dgwrnfdtu, dtocjslbi, DyncDocaovala, gjfiizde, gjheswoqn, gjiaiiuet, gjqsiuns, gjxeplfrz, gjybenqb, rdqquytey and 17 guests


You cannot post new topics in this forum
You cannot reply to topics in this forum
You cannot edit your posts in this forum
You cannot delete your posts in this forum

Search for:
Jump to:  
cron
Powered by phpBB® Forum Software © phpBB Group