Scientists and Invention of New Technology

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Science is only limited by the curiosity of the scientist and the quality of the instruments they use. With the invention of new technology, the boundaries of society’s collective knowledge widen with the increased capabilities of scientific equipment and practices. Because of this, interests such as ecology and population theories radically changed over the course of the 1900’s as the United States began to face land and food crises. While ecological techniques and practices were improved by ecologists such as Aldo Leopold and Paul Sears, population theorists such as Thomas Malthus and Lester Brown were able to formulate ideas and delve into the science behind the growth and fluctuations of population size. In this paper, I will discuss each scientist’s contributions and the role technology and improved techniques plays in their discoveries and contributions. Ecology was a field of particular interest during the early and mid-1900’s, as farming across the Midwest grew and game and fur hunting had reached a new popularity. Aldo Leapold, for one, foresaw the environmental impact of overhunting first hand. Wanting to increase the deer population, hunters were encouraged to kill predators of the deer. Before long, the increased deer population began to cause problems in the ecosystem, as the removal of predators severely shifted nature out of equilibrium. By studying this sort of relationship between predators and prey, Leopold then extrapolated this relationship to all parts of an ecosystem, including humans’ interactions with the land. Leopold summarizes this in his Land Ethic, where he claims “the land ethic changes the role of Homo sapiens from conqueror of the land-community to plain member and citizen of it” (Leopol... ... middle of paper ... ... times prior, taking action may be the hardest step to take, and only time will tell the true impacts of overpopulation and our response to this crisis. Works Cited Brown, L (1971). The environmental consequences of man’s quest for food. Annals of the New York Academy of Sciences, Vol. 184 (1971):62-75. New York Academy of Sciences. Leopold, A., & Schwartz, C. W. (1949). A Sand County almanac, and Sketches here and there. London: Oxford University Press. Malthus, T. R., Winch, D., & James, P. (1992). An essay on the principle of population, or, A view of its past and present effects on human happiness: with an inquiry into our prospects respecting the future removal or mitigation of the evils which it occasions. Cambridge [England: Cambridge University Press. Sears, P. B. (1935). Deserts on the march. Norman: University of Oklahoma Press.
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