Volume 1 Issue 1
Fall 2003/Winter 2004

How Popular Novelists Affect
the Scientific Literacy of our Nation

Whitney Bruce
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This article examines Dan Brown’s Angels and Demons and Michael Crichton’s Prey in an attempt to discover, “How Popular Novelists affect the Scientific Literacy of our Nation.” Angels and Demons is a good choice because it addresses the scientific concept of anti-matter, while Prey focuses primarily on nanotechnology. These higher technology themes are now being tossed around in conversation by the “average Joe.” This article examines how much actual “science” is dealt with in these books and how the scientific community feels about this “half-writing” about difficult scientific concepts. It is amazing that many Americans are both interested as well as semi-educated about scientific advances, thanks to popular novelists weaving summarized bits of science into their plot lines.

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