I think what Principe discusses on p. 78 about “landmark” experiments can be said of the “landmark” canonical texts of the humanities. On the initial reading of Principe’s remarks on “landmark” experiments, I thought about how a lot of artists and people in general garner more recognition after their death. For example, Nipsey Hussle was honored posthumously with the Humanitarian Award at 2019 BET Awards for his philanthropic work. While there is no question that Nipsey deserved the award, some question whether or not he still would have received it if he had not died a couple months prior. Hence, I think about this same concept in relation to “landmark” experiments and controversial ideas.
One controversial idea we have read about is what Karl Marx expressed in his Economic and Philosophical Manuscripts of 1844. In hindsight, it is evident what Karl Marx wrote about was the beginning of the political ideology of communism which would spur revolutions in countries across the world. While I do not know much of Marx’s influence while he was alive, I can make the assumption that Marx’s influence after he died surpassed any he had while he was alive. So, since this class revolves around the idea of revolution, it is only fitting that the texts we have read deal with some type of controversy because revolutions are not started by maintaining the status quo.
In the distant future, what will people view as mistaken notions that we regard now as fact?