Science vs. Religion: What Scientists Really Think

By Elaine Howard Ecklund | Go to book overview

CHAPTER 8
What Scientists Are Doing Wrong That
They Could Be Doing Right

What concerns me about this perception… of science and religion going head-
to-head…. It’s like there’s two monologues going on. I don’t really feel like
it’s a dialogue between scientists and people who want to see… religion taught
in a science class. There are just two monologues. People are not talking to each
other very well.

—A forty-year-old chemist

Astronomer Carl Sagan, author of Cosmos, wrote in a 1989 article in Parade magazine, “Ignorance of science threatens our economic well-being, national security, and the democratic process. We must do better.”1 Twenty years later, how are scientists confronting this national ignorance that Sagan warned us about—especially when it comes to engaging a largely religious general public? In this chapter, we move beyond classrooms and universities to examine how scientists see themselves as addressing religion-science controversies in their interactions with the rest of the U.S. populace. After 275 interviews with scientists, I found that their responses fell along a continuum from nonintervention to active outreach.

Most nonreligious scientists view religion as a generally negative force in society. Some think scientists should not waste their precious research time talking about issues of science and faith with the public, that religious America will never be won over to science and scientific understanding. Many talk cynically about religiously committed Americans, whom they see as a threat to scientific research and science education.

Others are eager to connect with the public about religion and faith but disagree about how best to do it. And those who think that imparting better scientific understanding to members of the American public is a central goal for scientists are sometimes at a disadvantage. That over 50 percent of scientists currently identify with no religious tradition means they have little ongoing interaction with religious people and communities. As discussed in Chapter 5,

-127-

Notes for this page

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
One moment ...
Default project is now your active project.
Project items

Items saved from this book

This book has been saved
Highlights (0)
Some of your highlights are legacy items.

Highlights saved before July 30, 2012 will not be displayed on their respective source pages.

You can easily re-create the highlights by opening the book page or article, selecting the text, and clicking “Highlight.”

Citations (0)
Some of your citations are legacy items.

Any citation created before July 30, 2012 will labeled as a “Cited page.” New citations will be saved as cited passages, pages or articles.

We also added the ability to view new citations from your projects or the book or article where you created them.

Notes (0)
Bookmarks (0)

You have no saved items from this book

Project items include:
  • Saved book/article
  • Highlights
  • Quotes/citations
  • Notes
  • Bookmarks
Notes
Cite this page

Cited page

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

(Einhorn, 1992, p. 25)

(Einhorn 25)

1

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited page

Bookmark this page
Science vs. Religion: What Scientists Really Think
Table of contents

Table of contents

Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger Reset View mode
Search within

Search within this book

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

Full screen
/ 228

matching results for page

Cited passage

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn, 1992, p. 25).

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences."1

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited passage

Thanks for trying Questia!

Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

For full access in an ad-free environment, sign up now for a FREE, 1-day trial.

Already a member? Log in now.