in an unknown town: Remapping the social sciences
Abbott, AM'75, PhD'82, proposes a theory of research in the social
sciences that follows a fractal pattern. There's a curious thing
about fractals. Once you recognize a pattern, you begin seeing
them all over the place: in the tangled tops of crab apple trees,
in the early winter waves crashing against the concrete riprap
along the South Shore, and-in Andrew Abbott's case-in the way
knowledge moves through the social sciences.
of Arc fever
"Joan of Arc" into your Web browser and skip around the 100,000-plus
threads that result. One thread likely leads to Scientology founder
L. Ron Hubbard's declaration that in a previous life he was Charles
VII and "abandoned" Joan, another to the International Joan of
Arc Society's repository of scholarly and pedagogic information.
And certainly a few lead to reviews and synopses of the 1999 film
many lovers say, can and do attract-it's just a matter of the
right chemistry. A team of University chemists believes this maxim
can be true at the cellular level too, and its research is bringing
together the most extreme of opposites-living cells and man-made
materials-in an effort to create tiny biomedical devices smart
enough to communicate with the body's building blocks.