This Idea Must Die: Scientific Theories That Are Blocking Progress

Author(s): John Brockman

Science & Natural History

The bestselling editor of This Explains Everything brings together 175 of the world’s most brilliant minds to tackle Edge.org’s 2014 question: What scientific idea has become a relic blocking human progress?


Each year, John Brockman, publisher of Edge.org—”The world’s smartest website” (The Guardian)—challenges some of the world’s greatest scientists, artists, and philosophers to answer a provocative question crucial to our time. In 2014 he asked 175 brilliant minds to ponder: What scientific idea needs to be put aside in order to make room for new ideas to advance? The answers are as surprising as they are illuminating. In :



  • Steven Pinker dismantles the working theory of human behavior

  • Richard Dawkins renounces essentialism

  • Sherry Turkle reevaluates our expectations of artificial intelligence

  • Geoffrey West challenges the concept of a “Theory of Everything”

  • Andrei Linde suggests that our universe and its laws may not be as unique as we think

  • Martin Rees explains why scientific understanding is a limitless goal

  • Nina Jablonski argues to rid ourselves of the concept of race

  • Alan Guth rethinks the origins of the universe

  • Hans Ulrich Obrist warns against glorifying unlimited economic growth

  • and much more.


Profound, engaging, thoughtful, and groundbreaking, This Idea Must Die will change your perceptions and understanding of our world today . . . and tomorrow.

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Product Information

"Physics, statistics, robotics, linguistics, medicine-all are zestfully scrutinized in this exuberant, mind-blowing gathering of innovative thinkers."--Booklist

General Fields

  • : 9780062374349
  • : HarperCollins
  • : HarperCollins
  • : January 2015
  • : 203mm X 135mm X 24mm
  • : United States
  • : books

Special Fields

  • : 592
  • : 415
  • : Paperback / softback
  • : John Brockman