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Science, Fiction, and points in between

§ Salon, January 5, 2000
Annie M. Paul interviews Howard Gardner about his new book, Intelligence Reframed: Multiple Intelligences for the 21st Century (Basic Books). Gardner has expanded his famous set of seven distinct intelligences by adding a 'naturalist intelligence'. He considered but rejected adding a 'spiritual intelligence', though he gives half-credit to an 'existential intelligence'.

§ Salon, December 31, 1999
An column by Joe Conason on the subject of fundamentalism in the new millennium. a time when human beings have developed powers of scientific observation that were once unimaginable, it is amazing that society is still besieged by a "religious right" which insists on teaching children such notions as the literal truth of the Bible.

What I find even more remarkable, and disheartening, is the fact that the most prominent citizens of the most powerful country on earth hardly dare to contradict these boobs. Indeed, the leading aspirant to this nation's highest office seems quite eager to reassure his most benighted constituents that he shares their superstitions and prejudices.

§ Salon, Dec. 24, 1999
Margaret Wertheim reviews Michael Shermer's How We Believe: The Search for God in an Age of Science (W.H. Freeman), taking issue with Shermer and writers of other recent books addressing science and religion (including Wendy Kaminer) for missing an essential point: that, more than simply binding cultural groups together, religions make fundamental claims about the nature of reality that are beyond the purview of physical science.

A companion essay by Lawrence Osborne describes the Templeton Foundation, known for its cash prizes to science writers on religious themes. Now it's funding experiments to demonstrate the efficacy of faith and the medical effects of prayer. If the results are disappointing, they have a backup explanation ready.

§ Getting It, 12.30.99
Thomas S. Roche presents the Top 10 Centuries of the Millennium [link via Robot Wisdom].

(Fri 7 Jan 2000)

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