Carl Sagan, the scientist who worked on NASA’s Voyager probe missions, was a powerful science communicator who literally seduced the minds of millions of viewers through his charismatic storytelling. Carl Sagan understood the power of media and the power of storytelling. He synthesized both to deliver the beauty of the cosmos and science to millions of viewers through standard television desktops.
One of Carl’s most powerful examples of science through storytelling is his use of the ancient Japanese Battle of Dan-no-ura and the Heiki warriors. He used this story to demonstrate the process of artificial selection:
excerpt from the demon haunted world: science as a candle in the dark:
“I worry that, especially as the Millennium edges nearer, pseudo-science and superstition will seem year by year more tempting, the siren song of unreason more sonorous and attractive. Where have we heard it before? Whenever our ethnic or national prejudices are aroused, in times of scarcity, during challenges to national self-esteem or nerve, when we agonize about our diminished cosmic place and purpose, or when fanaticism is bubbling up around us-then, habits of thought familiar from ages past reach for the controls. The candle flame gutters. Its little pool of light trembles. Darkness gathers. The demons begin to stir.” -Carl Sagan