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Experiment!: Planning, Implementing and Interpreting by Oivind Andersson

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3.4 Adolescence – Revolution!

Looking through the history schoolbook of my upper teens, most of it covers the doings of kings, generals and other people of power. The occasional digressions from this theme mostly deal with developments in the arts, sometimes in technology and, more rarely, in science. Out of about four hundred pages, only two are bestowed on what is sometimes called the Great Scientific Revolution. In my book, this turning point in our history goes under the more modest title “Scientific Advances”. I recently found that I, as a pupil, had put these two pages within parentheses, along with a penciled note of my history teacher's recommendation: “never mind this”.

Today, the remnants of the political intrigues in my history book mainly consist of new names and borders of nations. Although history's perpetual wars had the direst possible consequences for the people who had to endure them, the lasting effects on our present lives are limited. Regardless of the outcome of the Thirty Years’ War, for example, people living in catholic and protestant parts of Europe now enjoy similar health and living standards. Considering the radical effects that the scientific revolution has had, and still has, on our everyday lives, the outcomes of the political schemes of days gone by are dwarfed in comparison to the achievements of the scientists of the renaissance. We are greatly indebted to them and I wonder why many history teachers miss this point. I venture to think that it ...

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