The Apocalypse and the scientific imaginary

Bertrand Vidal

Abstract





According to the French specialist in sociology of science and collective knowledge, Gérald Bronner, “our worldview can be understood in two ways: knowledge or belief” (2009:21). In other words: Science of Hope, However, when science – privileged domain of objective and rational knowledge – become alarmist (ex. The scaremongering strategies about the global effects of climate change), knowledge can also be tainted by irrationality and belief. That is the case, especially, concerning the Doomsday Clock.
In fact, from sociological point of view, instead of reporting objectively and scientifically the threat, the Atomic Scientists, by capturing the pattern of Apocalypse, have allowed a secularization and deconsecration of eschatology. Henceforth, the Apocalypse is not a theological prophecy, but a secular possibility. “The danger is great, but our message is not one of hopelessness” said Kennette Benedict, BAS executive director.




Keywords


Doomsday Clock; scientific belief; Apocalypse; anthropocene; secularization; apocalyptic imaginary

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References


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DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.7413/22818138052

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