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"grandeur in this view of life...."

Anne Dalke's picture

Also Bruce Wightman, "A Better Rational for Science Literacy" (same issue as below):
all students ... should become scientifically literate. And if they become better, more employable citizens in a more competitively viable America, all the better. But first and foremost, they should become scientifically literate because, to borrow Darwin's phrase, "there is grandeur in this view of life" .... the sciences force us to confront the smallness and irrelevance of human beings; they serve as an antidote to self-obsession. Physics teaches us that time and matter are not absolutes; biology, that astonishing complexity can arise from a long, natural, stepwise process. The scope and existential implications of these ideas are immense.