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Cosmic apprentice : dispatches from the edges of science

Author: Dorion Sagan
Publisher: Minneapolis ; London : University of Minnesota Press, [2013]
Edition/Format:   Print book : EnglishView all editions and formats
Summary:
As science has become more specialized and more costly, its questing spirit has been constrained by dogma. And philosophy, perhaps the discipline best placed to question orthodoxy, has retreated behind dense theoretical language and arcane topics of learning. Sagan draws on classical and contemporary philosophy to intervene provocatively in often-charged debates on thermodynamics, linear and nonlinear time, purpose,  Read more...
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Document Type: Book
All Authors / Contributors: Dorion Sagan
ISBN: 9780816681358 081668135X 9780816681365 0816681368
OCLC Number: 816563877
Description: 293 pages ; 23 cm
Contents: Introduction Condensed-the Questing Spirit --
Part I. From "Protozoan" to Posthuman --
1. The Human is More than Human: Interspecies Communities and the New Facts of Life --
2. Bataille's Sun and the Ethical Abyss: Late-Night Thoughts on the Problem of an Affirmative Biopolitics --
3. The Post-Man Already Always Rings Twice --
Part II. Stardust Memories --
4. Stardust Memories --
5. A Quick History of Sex --
6. Who is I? --
7. Of Whales and Aliens: The Search for Intelligent Life on Earth --
Part III. Gaia Sings the Blues --
8. Thermosemiosis: Boltzmann's Sleight, Trim's Hat, and the Confusion concerning Entropy --
9. Life Gave Earth the Blues --
10. Mousetrap --
Part IV. Closing the Open Circuit --
11. Priests of the Modern Abe: Scientific Revolution's and the Kook-Critic Continuum, Being a Play of Crackpots, Skeptics, Conformists, and the Curious --
12. Metametazoa --
13. Kermitronics --
14. On Doyle on Drugs --
Conclusion: Floating into Spinoza's Ocean --
Acknowledgments --
Notes --
Index.
Responsibility: Dorion Sagan.

Abstract:

As science has become more specialized and more costly, its questing spirit has been constrained by dogma. And philosophy, perhaps the discipline best placed to question orthodoxy, has retreated behind dense theoretical language and arcane topics of learning. Sagan draws on classical and contemporary philosophy to intervene provocatively in often-charged debates on thermodynamics, linear and nonlinear time, purpose, ethics, the links between language and psychedelic drugs, the search for extraterrestrial intelligence, and the occupation of the human body by microbial others.

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"Profound, elegant, and funny, Cosmic Apprentice is a treat for anyone who likes to think-that is, for any true member of the Craniata, equipped with both brains and backbones!" -Greg Bear"A brief Read more...

 
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