you think of a scientist, what do you picture?
You probably will think of someone with wild hair, white lab coat,
glasses, beakers filled with bubbling liquids, a loner, someone
who is a mad scientist. These are largely the stereotypical traits
that people associate with the image of a scientist.
course, we all know that these characteristics aren't necessarily
true. Yes, some scientists do fit the bill - think of Albert
Einstein here. He has the wild hair, the odd personality and
sometimes wore the white lab coat. He even had cartoons created
about him, showing his "wacky" side.Yet he was one
of the most brilliant minds of his time.
Now put yourself in the shoes of someone who lived in the eighteenth
or nineteenth centuries. What do you picture a scientist to be like?
Back in the
eighteenth and nineteenth centuries scientists also faced stereotypes.
Caricatures were a large part of life then. These humorous drawings
mocked everything from politics to art and even science and medicine.
for larger image
The smallpox vaccine, originally prepared
from the lesions of people infected with cowpox (a much milder
disease contracted from cows), made many people fearful --
of cow-borne disease, of usurping God's will, of the unknown.
This 1802 cartoon shows Edward Jenner, the vaccine's discoverer,
administering it, as previous vaccine recipients erupt with