The world of science has long been dogged with communication problems, like how to convince the world, for example, that humans really are changing the planet’s climate. Or that we really did evolve slowly over time rather than springing forth suddenly and fully formed. What’s missing, Randy Olson argues in his new book, Houston, We Have a Narrative (University of Chicago Press), is a nuanced understanding of narrative. A deep-seated grasp of and appreciation for narrative, Olson writes, would give scientists the tools to not only argue more persuasively, but produce better work as well.
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