‘The Workshop and the World’ Review: Science and Authority

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Eppur si muove (“And yet it moves”): These are the words Galileo purportedly whispered when facing the Inquisition in 1633, having recanted his heretical view that Earth circles the sun. The apocryphal utterance has come to represent the defiance of science in the face of religious, societal or governmental opposition. The notion of scientific authority—of argument rooted in experimental facts as opposed to unsubstantiated opinion—was something new in Galileo’s time. In succeeding centuries, the Enlightenment ideal of a systematic, self-correcting method to illuminate the organization and operations of nature would give…

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