Theories of the Earth and Universe—A History of Dogma in the Earth Sciences



S. Warren Carey rejects the concept of subduction. In this book he links together four subequal themes, with a few autobiographical notes sprinkled throughout, listed as follows in order of decreasing length: a history of science, a lucid review of tectonics and structural geology, an updating of his hypothesis that the Earth is expanding, and a review of the frontiers of cosmology, leading finally to a suggested mechanism for the expansion. Tectonics and structural geology have served as the hub of Carey's long and wide-ranging career, and the history of science section of this book emphasizes geology and geophysics, with special reference to the tribulations of scientists like Sam Carey himself, who marched to a different drummer and bucked the establishment.

Carey began his career, his dissertation work, in New Guinea, site of the world's most vigorous shearing (some would say transpression) between the Australia-India and the Pacific “polygons” (Carey uses that term to distinguish his 2900-km-thick tectonic blocks that move on the liquid outer core of the Earth from the 100-km-thick plates of plate tectonic theory). He immediately became a mobilist, and for the next 20 years, along with a few other geologists of vision, had to grapple with a fixist establishment.