Bill Bryson ensina como escrever sobre ciência para leigos

Em A Short History of Nearly Everything Bill Bryson oferece bons exemplos de como tratar de temas científicos complexos de forma que um leigo entenda.

O autor abre o livro com a seguinte citação:

The physicist Leo Szilard once announced to his friend Hans Bethe
that he was thinking of keeping a diary: “I don’t intend to publish. I
am merely going to record the facts for the information of God.”
“Don’t you think God knows the facts?” Bethe asked.
“Yes,” said Szilard.
“He knows the facts, but He does not know this version of the facts.”

-Hans Christian von Baeyer,
Taming the Atom

E aqui, transcrevo trechos da introdução.

“Welcome. And congratulations. I am delighted that you could make it. Getting here wasn’t
easy, I know. In fact, I suspect it was a little tougher than you realize. To begin with, for you to be here now trillions of drifting atoms had somehow to assemble in an intricate and intriguingly obliging manner to create you. It’s an arrangement so
specialized and particular that it has never been tried before and will only exist this once. For the next many years (we hope) these tiny particles will uncomplainingly engage in all the billions of deft, cooperative efforts necessary to keep you intact and let you experience the supremely agreeable but generally underappreciated state known as existence.”

****

“Not only have you been lucky enough to be attached since time immemorial to a favored evolutionary line, but you have also been extremely-make that miraculously-fortunate in your personal ancestry. Consider the fact that for 3.8 billion years, a period of time older than the Earth’s mountains and rivers and oceans, every one of your forebears on both sides has been
attractive enough to find a mate, healthy enough to reproduce, and sufficiently blessed by fate and circumstances to live long enough to do so. Not one of your pertinent ancestors was squashed, devoured, drowned, starved, stranded, stuck fast, untimely wounded, or otherwise deflected from its life’s quest of delivering a tiny charge of genetic material to the right partner at the right moment in order to perpetuate the only possible sequence of hereditary combinations that could result-eventually, astoundingly, and all too briefly-in you.

This is a book about how it happened-in particular how we went from there being nothing at all to there being something, and then how a little of that something turned into us, and also some of what happened in between and since. That’s a great deal to cover, of course, which is why the book is called A Short History of Nearly Everything, even though it isn’t really. It couldn’t be. But with luck by the time we finish it will feel as if it is.”

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