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  • re. Civil War, where germ theory was "just a few short decades away" from being "fully understood." Ummm, I believe it would be more accurate to say "just a few short decades away from being fully conceived." While the theory per se is now "fully understood" and appreciated by current and former medical microbiologists (such as I), as well as by medical historians, several discoveries in the past few decades have revealed its limitations, making it very much a living construct again.

    Posted by Dennis Green on Sat 12 Dec 2009

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Kate Daloz is a founding member of the group NeuWrite: Columbia Scientists and Writers. She received an MFA from Columbia where she also taught undergraduate composition. Her essays, which often focus on scientific and historical tensions, have appeared in Ballyhoo Stories, Mr. Beller’s Neighborhood and Dossier journal. She is at work on a collection of non-fiction stories about conflicts between tradition and modernity in Vermont’s Northeast Kingdom, where she was born and raised. Her most recent essay, "The Dowser Dilemma," was published in the Spring 2009 issue of The American Scholar.
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The brutalities of progress are called revolutions. When they are over we realize this: that the human has been roughly handled, but that it has advanced.
Victor Hugo, 1862
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Lewis H. Lapham is Editor of Lapham's Quarterly. He also serves as editor emeritus and national correspondent for Harper's magazine.
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