REJECTION OF CONTINENTAL DRIFT

WEGENER'S IDEAS WERE GENERALLY REJECTED BY

GEOLOGISTS BECAUSE:

- THEY ASSUMED THAT CONTINENTS MOVED THROUGH THE ROCKS OF THE OCEAN BASINS, WHICH SEEMED PHYSICALLY IMPOSSIBLE

(ONLY LATER WAS IT REALIZED THAT THE SEA FLOOR ALSO MOVED)

- THEY OFFERED NO GOOD IDEA OF WHAT FORCES COULD MOVE THE CONTINENTS

(THE IDEA OF MANTLE CONVECTION CAUSING IT WAS SUGGESTED IN THE 1920'S BY ARTHUR HOLMES BUT NOT ACCEPTED)

- THE DATA IMPLYING THAT THE CONTINENTS HAD MOVED SEEMED

WEAK

(UNTIL IT WAS CONFIRMED BY DATA FROM PALEOMAGNETISM AND SEISMOLOGY)

WITH 20/20 HINDSIGHT, IT WAS A MISTAKE TO REJECT THE OBSERVATIONS BECAUSE THERE WAS NO CONVINCING THEORY TO EXPLAIN HOW THEY CAME ABOUT

("WHAT HAPPENS?" AND "WHY?" ARE DIFFERENT QUESTIONS)