A Twist of the Dial

in Science on the Air

Published by University of Chicago Press

Published in print October 2008 | ISBN: 9780226467597
Published online March 2013 | e-ISBN: 9780226466958 | DOI:
A Twist of the Dial

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Popularization remained a marginal activity for the scientific and academic elite during the early 1930s, rarely high on their professional agendas. To some, popularization represented a necessary evil that, at best, drained resources and time from valuable research and, at worst, ran counter to science's best interests by subjecting it to the public spotlight. Neither attitude lent support to the struggle to gain airtime, an effort that required ever more ingenuity and accommodation to persuade listeners not to twist the dial away from science. Maurice Holland, director of the National Research Council's Division of Engineering and Industrial Research, blamed the scientific community for failing to realize radio's potential for presenting science. After a brief flirtation with the medium, he said, “science has abdicated from the throne of power”.

Keywords: Maurice Holland; radio; scientific community; science popularization

Chapter.  7092 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Media Studies

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