Collection Finding Our Place in the Cosmos: From Galileo to Sagan and Beyond

Articles and Essays

  • Modeling the Cosmos

    Ancient Greek Astronomy and Cosmology. As the stars move across the sky each night people of the world have looked up and wondered about their place in the universe. Throughout history civilizations have developed unique systems for ordering and understanding the heavens. Babylonian and Egyptian astronomers developed systems that became the basis for Greek astronomy, while societies in the Americas, China and India developed ...

  • Life on Other Worlds

    Peoples & Creatures of the Moon. Humans have long imagined the kinds of creatures or peoples that might live on Earth's moon. This section briefly describes ideas about lunar life in the 17th, 19th the 20th centuries through a series of items from the Library of Congress' collections. By examining ideas about life on the moon, insights emerge about the interplay between imagination and ...

  • Carl Sagan and the Tradition of Science

    Sagan's Youth and the Progressive Promise of Space. Carl Sagan was captivated by the cosmos from an early age. Reflecting on his youth, he identified a series of experiences that drew him to astronomy and a perspective on the social progress science and technology would bring to the future of humanity.