Is part of our rejection of expertise, distrust of science and weaponization of the precautionary principle tied to how suicidally close we came to mutually assured destruction during the cold war? What are the cultural drivers that have led the modern left to reject nuclear energy? How did we come to exaggerate the potential harms from a nuclear accident to biblical proportions? How is the idea of nuclear apocalypse different from climate apocalypse in terms of its imagery and cultural framing?
I am joined by Spencer Weart the retired director of the Center for History of Physics for the American Institute of Physics to answer these questions. Spencer holds a Ph.D. in physics and astrophysics and has devoted much of his career to working as a historian of science. He is the author of a number of books including “The Rise of Nuclear Fear.”