The Deification Of Scientists

Author: RoderickSpode ,

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  • RoderickSpode
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    Not to be confused with deification of science.

    Is this really happening? I think so, albeit in a very subtle way. I think we can see it in pop-culture.

    If you watch old movies, you might notice a trend. In the 30's and 40's, scientists were often depicted as either mad (the evil mad scientist), or the A-sexual intellectual who has to be rescued numerous times by the alpha-male hero of the movie. This, often times due to his over-the-top scientific curiosity that sometimes even over rides humanitarianism. Typically the scientist in these B-movies movies might be played by someone with a name like Egbert Hoffmeyer, and the male hero played by someone with a name like Biff Jones (or Buff, Cal, Rip, Rock, Tex Jones).


    When the cultural space-age (space-age pop) came around in the 50's, this began to change. The producers found a way to write movie scripts about the popular subject of the supernatural, with a scientific twist. Instead of, say, a demon possessed vampire, we would have a human becoming a blood craving mutant due to a h-bomb experiment, or radiation contamination. And instead of the scientist simply being an intellectual impotent side-kick needing rescuing all the time, the scientist is the alpha-male star of the movie played by Biff Jones. And he can kick anyone's a**.

    Outside of pop-culture, the deification of scientists is a bit different. It's not aimed at specific individuals so much as a unit of scientists alleged to have no prejudices, no political influences, no ulterior motives, etc. And of course they must be Darwinian evolutionists.





  • ludofl3x
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    Can you define what you mean by 'deification' here? Would you say the 'alpha male' hero character from 30's movies was also a deification of that archetype? And do you mean the CHARACTER was named Eggbert Hofenmeyer and the CHARACTER was named Tex Jones? Cary Grant was an alpha male actor...named Cary. 

    Without a question, I'm left to only imagine what you might be getting at here. Did you like it better when "Scientists" were nerds who got rescued by the former high school quarterbacks? I don't understand what you're objecting to. Also I don't understand what your boner over 'evolutionists' (these are typically called BIOLOGISTS if they're actually in the science community) is, I mean can you give me an example of where this ever even comes up in movies? I'm thinking of like Jurassic Park, where they talk about evolutionary components of dinosaurs, etc., but no one says "Oh yeah, because Darwin rulez!" in that movie. 



  • Polytheist-Witch
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    Stupid topic. Just because someone is not in a religion doesn't make scientists gods in their mind. Fucking morons. 
  • Mopac
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    I love it when people think they are scientific because they have read a lot of books on science. 


  • ludofl3x
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    --> @Mopac
    Can you provide an example, or explain why you love this? 
  • Polytheist-Witch
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    --> @Mopac
    You think Jesus lived because you read a book. Don't throw stones and look stupid. 
  • Mopac
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    --> @ludofl3x @Polytheist-Witch
    I love it because of what Poly is saying.
    Atheists who make pretense of beimg scientific like to say we Christians simply believe what we read.

    I love it because pointing out this hypocrisy has made this argument a lot less popular than it used to be. 10 years ago it seemed to be a popular argument.  It is now more widely recognized as being a bad choice of argument.

    Also, considering I go to a church full of doctors, programmers, and engineers, we are by no means anti-science. It is an accusation that doesn't stick.








  • RoderickSpode
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    --> @ludofl3x
    Can you define what you mean by 'deification' here? Would you say the 'alpha male' hero character from 30's movies was also a deification of that archetype? And do you mean the CHARACTER was named Eggbert Hofenmeyer and the CHARACTER was named Tex Jones? Cary Grant was an alpha male actor...named Cary. 

    Without a question, I'm left to only imagine what you might be getting at here. Did you like it better when "Scientists" were nerds who got rescued by the former high school quarterbacks? I don't understand what you're objecting to. Also I don't understand what your boner over 'evolutionists' (these are typically called BIOLOGISTS if they're actually in the science community) is, I mean can you give me an example of where this ever even comes up in movies? I'm thinking of like Jurassic Park, where they talk about evolutionary components of dinosaurs, etc., but no one says "Oh yeah, because Darwin rulez!" in that movie. 
    Deification here is a hyperbole. Society follows trends, and I think we see an obvious trend on how scientists are depicted in pop-art. And evolution by the way has a huge role in American cinema. It's deeply invested in our pop-culture. So it would stand for reason that it has a similar influence as cultural religion.



    The role of the alpha-male, and who is chosen to represent that role reveals a lot about our society. Often it's a racial issue. The alpha-male hero is usually white. To a lesser degree black and Hispanic, except in their own ethnic media. Asians males typically play emasculating roles.

    The male scientist, like the Asian male sort of played the more emasculating role. They obviously decided to change this theme in the 50's.

    We don't see as much of the corn-ball characters named Buff Armstrong anymore fortunately. But nowadays there seems to be an assumption that scientists, particularly biologists, are not subject to bias (cultural, religious, etc.), political influence, etc.




  • ludofl3x
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    --> @RoderickSpode
    All the other somewhat odd content in your post aside :), I'm curious about this:

    And evolution by the way has a huge role in American cinema. It's deeply invested in our pop-culture. So it would stand for reason that it has a similar influence as cultural religion.
    Can you give me some examples of the science of evolution is deeply invested in our pop culture? As far as it having an influence, can you give me the 'cultural religion' analogue to, say, evolution's "influence" on medical science? 

    I'm sorry, I'm just not entirely sure at all what point you're making. Evolutionary science is by no means a trend, it seems like you want to put it in the same category as the atkins diet. 
  • Stronn
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    --> @RoderickSpode
    For what it's worth, in Europe, Australia and New Zealand it is common to name streets on university campuses for famous scientists. Here in the U.S., it is more common to name them for athletes and coaches.
  • Polytheist-Witch
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    --> @Stronn
    Then move. 
  • Stronn
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    --> @Polytheist-Witch
    Thanks for the suggestion. I will give it all the consideration it deserves.
  • Polytheist-Witch
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    No you will not liar
  • ludofl3x
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    I know you struggle with this, so I'll help: the joke is that he's already given your comment its due consideration, because there's nothing at all to consider, really. "THen move" doesn't include your patented fuckface cunt liar bigot move, though, so I'm wondering if it's actually you.
  • keithprosser
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    --> @Stronn
    I'd guess the nearest thing to a deified scientist recently was Stephen Hawking, but I'd say his fame and adulation pales in comparison to that of Beyonce. 
  • zedvictor4
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    --> @RoderickSpode
    Why must a scientist be a Darwinian Evolutionist?
  • zedvictor4
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    --> @Mopac
    Doctors, Programmers and Engineers are not necessarily Scientists.

    These people are generally, only concerned with the practical application of a methodology

    Most of the scientific work would have been carried out prior to their involvement.




  • Stephen
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    --> @Mopac
    I love it when people think they are scientific because they have read a lot of books on science. 

    I don't love it when people read the bible, don't understand what it is they are reading,  take it at face value without question, and then start preaching what is or is not the truth.

  • Mopac
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    --> @Stephen
    You and me both.
    For 

    "no prophecy of the scripture is of any private interpretation. For the prophecy came not in old time by the will of man: but holy men of God spake as they were moved by the Holy Ghost."



  • Mopac
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    --> @zedvictor4
    A scientist is one who follows the methodology of the scientific method.

    An engineer can be a scientist.

    But right, not necessarily scientists.



  • RoderickSpode
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    --> @zedvictor4
    There's an idea that if a professional in the field of science is not an evolutionist, then they're not really scientists.
  • RoderickSpode
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    --> @Stronn
    And celebrities and politicians.

    You're bringing up a valid point. By the outward appearance, scientists generally do not fall in the category of famous, iconic celebrities. This is the point I brought up in the OP.

    Outside of pop-culture, the deification of scientists is a bit different. It's not aimed at specific individuals so much as a unit of scientists alleged to have no prejudices, no political influences, no ulterior motives, etc. And of course they must be Darwinian evolutionists.

    The scientist plays a different role than the typical celebrity. The actors are concerned with their public image and popularity, athletes their personal and team accomplishments, the politician their public image and votes. The scientist's role is the selfless person more concerned with the advancement of humanity rather than their own personal accomplishments. So they're deified in a different more subtle way. They are not a name, but a collection of nameless celebrities. They're sometimes depicted as people who have absolutely no agenda, no political leaning, no prejudices, completely objective, etc.
  • Stronn
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    --> @RoderickSpode
    Revered is probably a better word for it than deified.
  • zedvictor4
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    --> @Stronn
    Yep.
    Deification, is over-egging the custard somewhat.
  • zedvictor4
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    --> @RoderickSpode
    Nonetheless:
    Evolution can be just as much a Godists principle as it can be a Scientists. 
    And as far as I am aware. Mr Darwin remained a Godist throughout his life.