Jacob Bronowski: Lower than the Angels



“The Ascent of Man” (1973) was a BBC series, Jacob Bronowski’s take on the history of science and invention. I saw it in the 1980s on the cable channel of the City College of New York. I would love to see it again. In the meantime I will have to make do with the book, which I picked up the other day for two dollars at a used book sale. I will do a chapter a week:

Man is part animal, part angel. To call him just an animal or just an ape would be a misleading understatement. Unlike other animals, man has an imagination. He can imagine the future and create it:

Every animal leaves traces of what it was; man alone leaves traces of what he created.

The gazelles for all their beauty and grace can never leave the grasslands of Africa. Should the grasslands ever disappear…

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