Myths, monsters, and morality. Understanding 'antiscience' and the media message


Haste, H., 1997. Myths, monsters, and morality. Understanding 'antiscience' and the media message. Interdisciplinary Science Reviews, 22 (2), pp. 114-120.

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This paper argues that we can only understand the problematic public images of science and acrimonious conflict between 'science' and 'antiscience' by appreciating the cultural context in which these exist, and the role that myth and metaphor play in framing some of our deepest concepts. There are three ancient myths, for example, which reflect profound anxieties about our relationship with the natural world – Pandora's Box, The Sorcerer's Apprentice, and the Promethean or Faustian story. These still permeate modern thought in many guises, and are the mainstay of many movies. The issues that dominate the present debates are considered, particularly the ways in which C. P. Snow's 'two cultures' have been transformed into a discussion of arrogance and intellectual hegemony. Some science fiction films which reflect the Promethean myth are analysed in terms of these issues, especially the 'Frankenstein' genre, and 'Jurassic Park'.


Item Type Articles
CreatorsHaste, H.
DepartmentsFaculty of Humanities & Social Sciences > Psychology
ID Code25322


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