The scientist Jacob Bronowski faced a question on the ultimate fate of humanity one night in 1945 when he was driven in a Jeep through the ashy ruins of Nagasaki. In the dark, he had not sensed that they had moved from the open country to the “city.” The “city” was a dark and desolate ruin. The only sound he heard was that of an American military radio playing the popular tune “Is You Is or Is You Ain’t My Baby?” In the context the question was a piercing one.
What Bronkowski saw in this peak moment of truth was ‘civilization face to face with its own implications. The implications are both the industrial slum that Nagasaki was before it was bombed, and the ashy desolation that the bomb made of the slum. And civilization asks of both ruins, ‘Is You Is, or Is You Ain’t My Baby?’ [quoted from Bronowski in Science and Human Values]
The Horrors We Bless: Rethinking the Just-War Legacy
Daniel C. Maguire
Daniel C. Maguire
Maguire was a professor at Marquette University. He specialized in religious ethics focusing upon issues of social justice and medical and ecological ethics.
Daniel Maguire’s books include:
- The Horrors We Bless: Rethinking the Just-War Legacy
- Sacred Choices: The Case for Contraception and Abortion in World Religions
- Sacred Energies: When the World’s Religions Sit Down to Talk about the Future of Human Life and the Plight of this Planet
- Ethics: A Complete Method for Moral Choice
He wrote over 200 articles in professional journals and magazines.
Science and Human Values
Bronkowski was a Polish-Jewish British mathematician, biologist, historian of science, theatre author, poet and inventor.
He is best remembered as the presenter and writer of the 1973 BBC television documentary series, The Ascent of Man, and the accompanying book. For the BBC series, Bronowski travelled around the world in order to trace the development of human society through its understanding of science.