During the 1950s and 1960s, science, with its handmaiden of technology, was hailed as the answer to all human woes, yet recently; we have experienced a backlash against this source of knowledge. Account for the change in popular attitude toward science and evaluate the effect it has had upon the discipline.
During the 1950s and 1960s many people believed that science could solve all of the problems facing society. Science was advancing at such an incredible rate that many fictional writings of the time predicted such things as colonization of the moon, flying cars, and that computers would be running almost all aspects of society by the end of the 20th century. Some people believed that science would be able to solve famine by drastically improving the way crops are raised and improving the amount of nourishment could be obtained from food. Some people believed that science would have the ability to eradicate all disease in the world and some people believed that science could possibly help bring peace to the world. But, recently there has been a backlash against science as a discipline and a solution to the problems of humanity. Many people now feel that science can"t solve all of the social problems that our world currently faces. Some view science as actually not only not helping the people, but adding to the problem. Many people now see the problems that increased scientific knowledge and technological advancement bring to the world. Technology has produced biological, chemical, and nuclear "weapons of mass destruction" which have the capability of killing thousands of people in relatively short periods of time. These weapons have produced the current state of fear that the world is in because many are afraid these type of weapons will or have fallen into the wrong hands. This has left many people feeling these weapons should have never been created. Also, the increase in scientific knowledge has led to the debate about human cloning and whether it should be banned world-wide or not and the possible social ramifications if it becomes a normal practice in the scientific community.