Profile: Alix Hui
Alexandra E. Hui has a unique background as an assistant professor who researches the history of science. Fluent in English, French and German, she has a background in astrophysics and interned at NASA and the Smithsonian Institution.
While initially trained in the quantitative scientific skills required for a degree in astrophysics, Hui's curiosity began to turn toward the more philosophical side of science.
"I realized I found more interesting how parts of science came to be accepted as right or wrong, historically" said Hui, who holds a doctorate from the University of California at Los Angeles.
With an interest in the role that culture plays in the practice and perpetuation of science, Hui studies how musical tastes influenced German scientists' experiments on sound sensation. Her research also involves physics, physiology and psychology (what was termed "psychophysics") of the 19th century. She teaches courses on the history of the Holocaust, science and Germany.
For Hui, history is a world of possibilities: so much of what we know could have been different if people had made different decisions and taken different actions. History is a great springboard for students interested in making a difference.
"Maybe it will help my students see their present and future as a world of possibilities," she said.
Next week … Michael Kardos !