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Название: The public image of chemistry
Авторы: Schummer J. (ed.), Bensaude-Vincent B. (ed.), Van Tiggelen B. (ed.)
Of all the scientific disciplines chemistry seems to be particularly concerned
about its public image. Indeed, popular associations with chemistry
range from poisons, hazards, chemical warfare, and environmental
pollution to alchemical pseudo-science, sorcery, and mad scientists.
Despite repeated campaigns for convincing the public that chemistry
would bring health, comfort, and welfare, chemists frequently meet with
hostility in popular culture. As student enrollment numbers has been
shrinking, chemistry departments have been closed in several countries.
Also in humanist culture chemistry has a very low profile; philosophers
in particular keep to their traditional neglect of anything related to chemistry.
Of course, chemists have always been complaining about their low
prestige, the lack of public acknowledgment of their achievements, and
the misguiding popular associations with chemistry, such that we now
have a long record of complaints of almost two centuries. More recently,
in response to their public image, chemists have tried to launch slogans
such as ‘green chemistry’ or even dropped the term ‘chemistry’ altogether
and adopted more fashionable labels such as ‘materials science’,
‘molecular science’, or ‘nanotechnology’.