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Home > Dictionary of Science Quotations > Scientist Names Index P > Joel R. Primack Quotes

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Joel R. Primack
(14 Jul 1945 - )

American who specializes in the formation and evolution of galaxies; and the nature of the dark matter that makes up most of the matter in the universe. Primack helped create the “Standard Model” of particle physics.

Science Quotes by Joel R. Primack (6 quotes)

A human without a cosmology is like a pebble lying near the top of a great mountain, in contact with its little indentation in the dirt and pebbles immediately surrounding it, but oblivious to its stupendous view.
— Joel R. Primack
As co-author with Nancy Ellen Abrams, in The View from the Center of the Universe: Discovering Our Extraordinary Place in the Cosmos (2006), 84.
Science quotes on:  |  Contact (65)  |  Cosmology (25)  |  Dirt (15)  |  Great (1574)  |  Human (1468)  |  Immediately (114)  |  Little (707)  |  Lying (55)  |  Mountain (185)  |  Oblivious (9)  |  Pebble (25)  |  Stupendous (13)  |  Top (96)  |  View (488)

It feels unacceptable to many people even to think of having a cosmology based on science. … They see fanciful origin stories as spicing up the culture. … Aspects of many origin stories can enrich our understanding of the scientific picture, but they cannot take its place.
— Joel R. Primack
As co-author with Nancy Ellen Abrams, in The View from the Center of the Universe: Discovering Our Extraordinary Place in the Cosmos (2006), 85.
Science quotes on:  |  Aspect (124)  |  Base (117)  |  Cosmology (25)  |  Culture (143)  |  Enrich (24)  |  Fanciful (6)  |  Feel (367)  |  Origin (239)  |  People (1005)  |  Picture (143)  |  Place (177)  |  Science (3879)  |  Scientific (941)  |  See (1081)  |  Spice (2)  |  Story (118)  |  Think (1086)  |  Unacceptable (3)  |  Understand (606)  |  Understanding (513)

Scientific knowledge does limit the imagination, but only in the same healthy way that sanity limits what we take as real.
— Joel R. Primack
As co-author with Nancy Ellen Abrams, in The View from the Center of the Universe: Discovering Our Extraordinary Place in the Cosmos (2006), 280.
Science quotes on:  |  Healthy (68)  |  Imagination (328)  |  Knowledge (1529)  |  Limit (280)  |  Real (149)  |  Sanity (9)  |  Scientific (941)  |  Way (1217)

The history of the universe is in every one of us. Every particle in our bodies has a multibillion-year past, every cell and every bodily organ has a multimillion-year past, and many of our ways of thinking have multithousand-year pasts.
— Joel R. Primack
As co-author with Nancy Ellen Abrams, in The View from the Center of the Universe: Discovering Our Extraordinary Place in the Cosmos (2006), 151.
Science quotes on:  |  Billion (95)  |  Body (537)  |  Cell (138)  |  History (673)  |  Million (114)  |  Organ (115)  |  Particle (194)  |  Past (337)  |  Think (1086)  |  Thinking (414)  |  Thousand (331)  |  Universe (857)  |  Way (1217)  |  Year (933)

There’s a joke among cosmologists that romantics are made of stardust, but cynics are made of the nuclear waste of worn-out stars.
— Joel R. Primack
As co-author with Nancy Ellen Abrams, in The View from the Center of the Universe: Discovering Our Extraordinary Place in the Cosmos (2006), 279. With less clarity (with no reference to the worn-out stars), this was expressed earlier by Simon Singh, in Big Bang: The Most Important Scientific Discovery of All Time and Why You Need To Know About It (2004), 389, as: “Romantics might like to think of themselves as being composed of Stardust. Cynics might prefer to think of themselves as nuclear waste.”
Science quotes on:  |  Cosmologist (5)  |  Cynic (6)  |  Joke (83)  |  Nova (6)  |  Nuclear (107)  |  Nuclear Waste (3)  |  Romantic (13)  |  Star (427)  |  Stardust (3)  |  Stars (304)  |  Waste (101)

We have an extraordinary opportunity that has arisen only twice before in the history of Western civilization—the opportunity to see everything afresh through a new cosmological lens. We are the first humans privileged to see a face of the universe no earlier culture ever imagined.
— Joel R. Primack
As co-author with Nancy Ellen Abrams, in The View from the Center of the Universe: Discovering Our Extraordinary Place in the Cosmos (2006), 297.
Science quotes on:  |  Afresh (4)  |  Arise (158)  |  Civilization (204)  |  Cosmological (11)  |  Culture (143)  |  Early (185)  |  Everything (476)  |  Extraordinary (79)  |  Face (212)  |  First (1283)  |  History (673)  |  Human (1468)  |  Imagine (164)  |  Lens (14)  |  New (1216)  |  Opportunity (87)  |  Privilege (39)  |  See (1081)  |  Through (849)  |  Twice (17)  |  Universe (857)  |  Western (45)


Carl Sagan Thumbnail In science it often happens that scientists say, 'You know that's a really good argument; my position is mistaken,' and then they would actually change their minds and you never hear that old view from them again. They really do it. It doesn't happen as often as it should, because scientists are human and change is sometimes painful. But it happens every day. I cannot recall the last time something like that happened in politics or religion. (1987) -- Carl Sagan
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- 90 -
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- 60 -
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- 50 -
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- 40 -
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JJ Thomson
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- 30 -
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- 20 -
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- 10 -
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