One day we are told that we will get cancer from eating potato crisps – six months later it is said that crisps are perfectly safe. Time after time we come across contradictory messages, all of which are based on scientific research. How can that come about?
According to university philosopher Roland Poirier Martinsson, this is because science is not an abstract world of its own, but has been created by fallible humans. Sometimes by a lonely genius who moves forward several steps at once, sometimes by large teams of researchers working together. Thus one cannot understand what science is, without looking at its history. Nor can we understand science without taking our own norms and conventions into consideration. Science is a cultural product among others. But what in fact is science? What is it good for? Can we rely on it? Roland Poirier Martinsson provides a thorough introduction to the history of science in the West, from the Ice Age to the age of global warming.
Roland Poirier Martinsson is 41 years old and is a specialist in theoretical philosophy associated with the University of Lund. He is often asked to give talks and he regularly contributes to polemical discussions in the media.