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Show Me the BoneReconstructing Prehistoric Monsters in Nineteenth-Century Britain and America$
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Gowan Dawson

Print publication date: 2016

Print ISBN-13: 9780226332734

Published to Chicago Scholarship Online: September 2016

DOI: 10.7208/chicago/9780226332871.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM CHICAGO SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (www.chicago.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright University of Chicago Press, 2021. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in CHSO for personal use.date: 28 September 2021

The Problems of Popularization

The Problems of Popularization

Chapter:
(p.242) 7 The Problems of Popularization
Source:
Show Me the Bone
Author(s):

Gowan Dawson

Publisher:
University of Chicago Press
DOI:10.7208/chicago/9780226332871.003.0008

This chapter shows that while Huxley won over the scientific community, he was less successful in persuading general audiences, who were instead more likely to listen to popularizers of science. The ongoing currency of the law of correlation posed a direct challenge to the cultural authority of the scientific naturalists. However, Huxley shied away from tackling Cuvier in his general journalism, and, when he did finally broach the issue of correlation in his popular lectures, he dramatically changed his mind to acclaim Cuvier’s law. The support for correlation that Huxley expressed, seemingly for strategic reasons, in his lectures and museum catalogues actually came to shape some of his specialist statements on the same subject, and even his own paleontological practices.

Keywords:   popularizers of science, Thomas Henry Huxley, scientific naturalism, lectures, journalism, specialism, cultural authority, museums, audiences

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