The Beginning of Time
In his blog titled “Huck, Jim, and Cosmology,” Joe Bauman effectively disarms his reader by using characters in Mark Twain’s The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn to introduce one of the liveliest areas in the discourse between science and religion - the paradoxical debate regarding how the universe came into existence. Bauman achieves this by employing an informative but neutral tone, detached diction, and common ground to place his reader on the level of an objective scholar seeking certainty. Throughout the article, Bauman’s syntax demonstrates to his audience that he is both sincere and knowledgeable with the issues relating to cosmology. By studying stars, constellations, and the “incomprehensible universe” through his own telescope, he creates a sentimental but provocative notion with his reader. The author often questions himself and popular belief to create a sense of doubt in his audience. Bauman goes back and forth between creationism and evolution. However, his diction while studying the desert stars at night leads him in the direction of intelligent design. Bauman evokes wonder in his audience when, “I… take off my glasses just so that I can stare with averted vision toward the fuzzy light and know I am seeing with my own eyes a vast stellar city of many billions of stars…” By using loaded language such as “averted vision” and “a vast stellar city”, the audience can picture staring up at the stars themselves, just like Huck and Jim did on their raft. Even though Bauman never stated his direct view on the beginning of the universe, with emotional words and phrases, the audience infers his experiences with the stars are more than scientific formulas and theories. While writing on the evolutionistic side of the spectrum, Bauman’s scientific research establishes credibility with his audience. Bauman stated that just in the past 100 years, scientists have discovered a possible 100 billion galaxies just like ours. The farthest able...
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