Astronomy 490 Homework #4 Spring 2007
Due date: Monday, Feb 26 at start of class
In class, you have volunteered (or been assigned) to read one of the following sections of the paper in detail:
* Characteristics: Physics Properties of the Objects (pages 3 – 8)
* Circumstances: The Context of Planets (pages 8 – 11)
* Cosmogony: The Formation of Planets (pages 11 – 14)
* Culture: The Common Understanding of “Planet” (pages 14-17)
In addition, you have volunteered (or been assigned) to argue for or against a definition of the word “planet” that includes Pluto.
1. Read the entire paper carefully. Recall that this article was assigned as an additional
reference on HW1.
2. Reread the section you are focusing on. Then write a short essay (1-2 pages,
typewritten) summarizing the ways in which your topic area (Characteristics,
Circumstances, Cosmogony, or Culture) could be used to define the word planet.
Be explicit about which objects in the Solar System would be included or excluded in
the various possible definitions you describe.
3. Come to class prepared to argue for or against a definition of the word “planet” that
includes Pluto (whichever side you volunteered for or were assigned).