Carl Sagan
Guy Lochhead, 02/09/10
American astronomer, astrochemist, and popularizer of the natural sciences. As well as being an accomplished scientist who worked on numerous landmark projects for NASA, he taught lectures on critical thinking, wrote numerous books – non-fiction and fiction – and presented one of the most widely viewed television series ever. This series, ‘Cosmos: A Personal Voyage’, guided the viewer through a wide range of scientific subjects. It has been broadcast in 60 countries, and seen by over 500 million people. He was tireless in his efforts to increase scientific understanding in non- scientists. Sagan had a fantastic attitude towards science. He was aware of the importance of public awareness to the progression of science, and didn’t see scientists as superior. I will include his science-fiction book ‘Contact’, because it represents an open-minded approach to the value of fiction, and an example of specialist knowledge being coupled with a desire to entertain. This can also be found in his non-fiction, and I hope that reading Cosmos, or just seeing its inclusion, will lead viewers onto that more strictly educational work.

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