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May 9, 2011 | by  | in Opinion |
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Editorial – Science

Science is important. Important with a big, pretentious, Neil Gaiman capital ‘I’.

It’s easy to place too much emphasis on the wrong questions as we trudge through life—especially when the bulk of tertiary education focuses on the ‘what’s and ‘why’s of life. But science is the study of ‘how’. Like some liminal lycra, science holds everything in place; it is so total and ever-present that it becomes—as any real omnipotent concept tends to do—more or less invisible. Almost everything we do can be traced along a trail of source or ideas back to science.

For this reason, an ignorance of science is far worse than any kind of cultural ignorance. Sure, it may annoy Uther when he has to explain why Robert Lepage is the single greatest theatre director alive, and Elle may fly into an epoxy of violent rage when people say that King of Limbs is Radiohead’s most experimental album, but, at the end of the day, these things don’t matter. Not really. Not when you consider that we’re specks, clinging to the thin skin of a rock that’s falling through space.

Art, culture and belief exist only on a human scale. Only on our terms. Science is there on every scale, and on its own terms. We study language, story, and design to work out what it is to be human (in one way or another), but science is bigger than that. We should respect science because only by nutting through that do we work out how and where we live. If everything is context, science is the greatest context we have available. And we should treasure the shit out of it.

On another note, our editorial seems as good a place as any to mention the ‘VUWSA Media Centre’ signs that are popping up over uni. This refers to the messy office with harbour views where Salient is born each week and from which the VBC broadcasts. No-one here calls it that, but now that there are signs being erected, we thought it a timely reminder to reassert our editorial independence from VUWSA. We’re required, under the Salient charter, to report on them; not to act as their communications department, as the title of ‘VUWSA Media Centre’ might suggest.

Science Alive!

Uther & Elle (who promise that this is the only time they’ll appear on the cover this year)
P.S. Uther is really trying to quit smoking, so he gives you permission to punch him in the face if you see him looking like he is going to light up. Seriously.

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About the Author ()

Uther makes theatre. Elle grew up on a boat. Together they edit Salient.

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