Category Archives: History

‘Scientist’: the evolving story of a word

by Judith Curry

Tracing the acceptance or rejection of “scientist” among researchers not only gives us a history of a word—it also provides insight into the self-image of scientific researchers in the English-speaking world in a time when the social and cultural status of “science” was undergoing tremendous changes. – Melinda Baldwin

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The case for blunders

by Judith Curry

Science is not concerned only with things that we understand. The most exciting and creative parts of science are concerned with things that we are still struggling to understand. Wrong theories are not an impediment to the progress of science. They are a central part of the struggle. – Freeman Dyson

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An energy model for the future, from the 12th century

by Judith Curry

So, are you wondering what we can learn about energy policy from the 12th century?

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‘Noticeable’ climate change

by Tony Brown

Climate changes. How often? In what direction? What is actually meant by ‘climate change?’ Is the current definition useful?

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The inevitable climate catastrophe

by Judith Curry

What can we learn from climate of the 17th century about future climate catastrophes?

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Historic Variations in Arctic sea ice. Part II: 1920-1950

by Tony Brown

Satellite observations that provide an hour by hour picture of every part of the Arctic make it easy to forget that large areas of it had not even been even explored 80 years ago – let alone its ice extent minutely observed.  This paper explores the controversy surrounding the period 1920-1950, which was a period of substantial warming in the Arctic.

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Historical perspective on the Russian heat wave

by Paul Farquharson

From about the fifth century A.D. onwards,  the Western tradition of history writing preserves abundant descriptions of weather and climate phenomena in sources such as Chronicles,  Annals and Histories.  If this material is left out of our understanding and memory of climate,  then contemporary extreme events may be mistaken for unique or unprecedented events.

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