Ok, I read the three articles and I’ve come to the conclusion (any scientifically interested person here please argue with me about that, since it troubles me and I need another opinion) that all three articles (especially the second one) are either describing a non-existing trend or misattribute this trend towards things like ‘risk aversion’, ‘victim culture’ etc. when other explanations are much more likely. And this in turn goes for the articles and essays they are based on as well.
So first of all, is there actually a decline in scientific breakthroughs? Well I would say that’s hard to tell when none of them provide a good definition of such breakthroughs. The first article presents then purely from a technology market standpoint, which barely has anything to do with science itself and more with engineering and its limits. All these articles are clearly not judging basic science as being all that important, since I could name important and fascinating discoveries in all natural sciences from the last 20 years. They are no paradigm shifts like the theory of evolution or the theory of relativity, but still, we don’t expect those every decade or even every century. And in my opinion it’s not legitimate to say that they were somehow only possible because of something special about the end of the 19th/start of the 20th century, both examples had a LONG backstory that made them possible, which happened to align somewhat. Let me give some examples though of previously unthinkable scientific discoveries of the 21st century: exotic forms of matter were created in material physics, gravity waves have finally been detected and exoplanets are being studied in astrophysics, the Higgs-Boson was found in particle physics… I could go on. In Biology the use of CRISPR-Cas9 is revolutionizing gene editing methods, we are learning more about the influence of viruses, transposable elements and bacteria on the evolution of organisms, when they were all thought of as simply originators of disease or junk for a pretty long time (this is a longer trend that already started in the late 20th century, but is now getting more and more interesting with each new discovery). I could go on here as well.
But even if I accept the notion of a scientific slowdown, this has fuck all to do with a ‘feminisation’ of science or risk aversion. The second article is probably where the incel OP here gets that notion (he still warps it even further into the usual misogynistic crap). It makes some seriously questionable statements, like that regulations are the problem that science has to deal with and that it should be more risk-happy. And if we break a few moral eggs by publishing biased results or engaging in unethical practices, so what? Apparently that’s what made the ‘warrior culture’ of the 19th century so great!
Oh and those evil anti-free speech people in the universities are clearly stopping scientific progress from happening… not the totally out of control lack of peer reviewing, the rise of predatory journals, the reduction in grant money for all but the flashiest basic science projects, the idea that scientific research has to be marketable and has to lead to a product, the constant pressure on scientists to publish as fast and as much as possible or else they lose their usually time-restricted jobs and don’t get the next short-term contract, leading to a flood of low-quality publications which, as I said before, no one has the time to review, the bias towards positive results (where negative ones could have explanatory power as well but are usually ignored), the focus on STEM fields to the detriment of the social and philosophical sciences (since they obviously rarely produce marketable results), the focus on competition instead of on cooperation (which in my opinion has gone way too far and causes friction in the scientific community)… again, I could go on, but I find it fascinating that not even ONE of these points has made it into these articles. Any of them might explain the alleged science slowdown better than some hypothesized ‘victim culture’.
Oh, LGBTQ like me can criticize studies from Saudi Arabia about how transpeople weren’t raised with the gender appropiate toys and that that’s the reason for the gender dysphoria now, the horror! Clearly this is causing the downfall of science in general! Give me a break.
So yeah, sorry for the long rant, but there are serious problems the scientific community has to face currently. Ignoring them all and instead blaming the reduction of open scientific racial and gender discrimination is just dumb in my opinion. One last thing: There is a small problem with a certain type of postmodernist thought that comes to very questionable if not dangerous conclusions like ‘only black people can research black history’ or ‘the scientific method was proposed by men and therefore lacks a feminine perspective, which is crucial (somehow)’ but that’s such a small, fringe problem, it’s barely worth discussing in contrast with all the other problems the scientific community has to face right now, in my opinion.