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From: "Daniel Fusch" <dfusch@hotmail.com>
Subject: (urth) Jim, about those scientists....
Date: Mon, 01 Nov 1999 20:34:40 PST

Hi, Jim!

Superior evidence can be a decided advantage!

Actually, I was wondering exactly the same thing...are there any good 
scientists in The Book of the New Sun? That is--scientists who aren't 
burning children, eviscerating their captives, or sewing new heads on 

I don't remember any right off hand. Father Inire, physicist...but as you 
said, he's the alien. And there's Master Ash, but he's more of a historian 
than a scientist. I think.

I just remembered that in "The Sword of the Lictor," Severian speaks of the 
scientists to whom people go when they want to become zoanthropes. Are these 
good scientists or bad scientists? They'd be pretty awful in OUR society, I 
imagine. But in Severian's society?

The curators in the Botanic Gardens are botanists, and they don't seem 
malevolent. Their task is the preservation of extinct forms of plant life, 
after all.

Yes, I guess the curators are the good scientists, then.

Hmmm, how come Severian always meets all the bad (or should I say "mad"?) 

Well, Jim, I would surmise that in Severian's age, there are no 
government-funded scientists (or not many, anyway), and science is an 
individual pursuit--often for individual gain. Presumably there are also a 
few good scientists who are acting for the greater good of mankind, but they 
seem to avoid Severian. It must be his torturer's outfit that scares them 

Oh, well.


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