Paul Ehrlich in His Time: A Historian’s View
As a historian, unversed in natural sciences, I will try to put a few aspects of science to the historical framework of the past 150 years: its role in history has been steadily changing, and its many different aspects have never been fully recognized by historians. There is a famous, but shameful gap between the humanities and the natural sciences, which were described by C.P. Snow as the two cultures. When I was taking an interest in some representatives of science in Germany in the decades preceding and following the First World War — Haber, Einstein and their circle, as well as the politicoscientific culture surrounding them — I was interested in man, in man with his love for science, which was still innocent at that time. The passion leading to great achievements was to be felt, but what were the conditions of involvement and success? What did “science as a profession” mean? What was the scientific ethos of that time, the prerequisite for creativity?
KeywordsNatural Science Nobel Prize Positivistic Science Historical Framework Diphtheria Antitoxin
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