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Piotr Urbanowicz

Summary

In this text, I argue that there are numerous affinities between 19th century messianism and testimonies of UFO sightings, both of which I regarded as forms of secular millennialism. The common denominator for the comparison was Max Weber’s concept of “disenchantment of the world” in the wake of the Industrial Revolution which initiated the era of the dominance of rational thinking and technological progress. However, the period’s counterfactual narratives of enchantment did not repudiate technology as the source of all social and political evil—on the contrary, they variously redefined its function, imagining a possibility of a new world order. In this context, I analysed the social projects put forward by Polish Romantics in the first half of the 19th century, with emphasis on the role of technology as an agent of social change. Similarly, the imaginary technology described by UFO contactees often has a redemptive function and is supposed to bring solution to humanity’s most dangerous problems.

Open access

Tadeusz Groń, Magdalena Piątkowska, Elżbieta Tomaszewicz, Bogdan Sawicki, Piotr Urbanowicz and Henryk Duda

Abstract

Polycrystalline samples of new scheelite-type tungstates, Pb1−3x xPr2xWO4 with 0.0098 ⩽ x ⩽ 0.20, where denotes cationic vacancies have been successfully prepared by a high-temperature solid-state reaction method using Pr2(WO4)3 and PbWO4 as the starting reactants. The influence of the Pr3+ substitution in the scheelite framework on the structure and optical properties of prepared new ceramic materials has been examined using powder X-ray diffraction method (XRD) and UV-Vis-NIR spectroscopy. The results of dielectric studies of Pb1−3x xPr2xWO4 samples showed both low values of dielectric constant (below 14) and loss tangent (below 0.2). The electrical conductivity and thermoelectric power measurements revealed a low conductivity (∼2 × 10−9 S/m) and the sign change of thermoelectric power around the temperature of 366 K suggesting the p-n transition. These results are discussed in the context of vacancy, acceptor and donor levels as well as the Maxwell-Wagner model.