|Annu. Rev. Astron. Astrophys. 1982. 20:
Copyright © 1982 by . All rights reserved
6.4. Concluding Remarks
Historically, most observational research has been concentrated on the bright, unusual nuclei of active galaxies or their extranuclear manifestations (e.g. radio lobes, jets). Of course, the nature of the nucleus and the associated bizarre phenomena are important scientific problems. Nonetheless observations that treat active galaxies as galaxies can point the way to understanding the origin and evolution of nuclear activity. This last generally overlooked direction of research may ultimately be more fruitful in understanding the fundamental nature of nuclear activity than the currently popular phenomenological studies.
Future studies will require statistically oriented approaches in order to understand the crucial issue: How do the extranuclear properties of active and quiescent galaxies compare with one another? Such studies need to be conducted for every galaxian attribute listed in the subsections of Sections 2, 3, and 4. Top priority goes to studies of local galaxy density, especially the identification and observational exploration of merging systems. The Space Telescope affords important opportunities to study the monsters, asleep or otherwise. Dominant cluster galaxies may prove an immediate and perhaps crucial proving ground for the "monster-feeding" scenario.
We are grateful for the preprints and reprints sent to us by colleagues too numerous to mention individually. Special thanks go to Helen Bluestein, Richard Fife, and Charlotte Arthur for typing the text and references. TH acknowledges the financial support provided by a Bok Fellowship at Steward Observatory.