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  • Writer's pictureArnold Schroder

#50: Varieties of Scientific Revolution pt. 1

(05/08/2022) The year is 2250, and the participation of humanity in the global ecosystem is shaped by a council of scientists contemplating, with considerable reverence and humility, the various paths before us. How did we get here from the exceptionally stupid place we are in now? In this series, we will examine the relationship of science to power--this time, we'll examine the ideological discipline that prevented climate and ecological scientists from speaking up and acting out sooner, and the rupture of that discipline as our crisis deepens. Our guide to that discipline will be the brilliant book Disciplined Minds: A Critical Look at Salaried Professionals and the Soul-Battering System that Shapes Their Lives by physicist Jeff Schmidt. We'll examine the ways that professional training of all varieties, including in the physical sciences, is ideological, requiring a narrowing of focus and a willingness to perform alienated labor in hierarchies; how science needs a revolution reintegrating the observer and the observed; and how ultimately the civil resistance model being employed by groups like Scientist Rebellion cannot withstand scrutiny: a scientific description of the nature of the current power structure has yet to be articulated.

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