PHILIP BALL Curiosity

ISBN 13: 9780099554271

Curiosity

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9780099554271: Curiosity

There was a time when curiosity was condemned. To be curious was to delve into matters that didn't concern you - after all, the original sin stemmed from a desire for forbidden knowledge. Through curiosity our innocence was lost. Yet this hasn't deterred us. Today we spend vast sums trying to recreate the first instants of creation in particle accelerators, out of pure desire to know. There seems now to be no question too vast or too trivial to be ruled out of bounds: Why can fleas jump so high? What is gravity? What shape are clouds? Today curiosity is no longer reviled, but celebrated. Examining how our inquisitive impulse first became sanctioned, changing from a vice to a virtue, "Curiosity" begins with the age when modern science began, a time that spans the lives of Galileo and Isaac Newton. It reveals a complex story, in which the liberation - and the taming - of curiosity was linked to magic, religion, literature, travel, trade and empire. By examining the rise of curiosity, we can ask what has become of it today: how it functions in science, how it is spun and packaged and sold, how well it is being sustained and honoured, and how the changing shape of science influences the kinds of questions it may ask.

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About the Author:

Philip Ball is a freelance writer and a consultant editor for Nature, where he previously worked as an editor for physical sciences. He writes regularly in the scientific and popular media, and his many books on scientific subjects include Critical Mass: How One Thing Leads To Another, which won the 2005 Aventis Prize for Science Books. His latest books include The Music Instinct, Universe of Stone: Chartres Cathedral and the Triumph of the Medieval Mind, and, most recently, Unnatural: The Heretical Idea of Making People. Philip obtained a PhD in physics from the University of Bristol.

From Booklist:

*Starred Review* In the gap between the Bible’s warning against being “curious in unnecessary matters” to Einstein’s reverence for “holy curiosity,” Ball discerns a profound cultural shift. To explain the shift that transformed curiosity from a dangerous temptation to a praiseworthy motivation, Ball revisits the intellectually restless lives of great scientists across the centuries, including Copernicus, Kepler, Galileo, and Newton. But readers soon learn that the work of investing curiosity with a new and positive value also involved astrologers, magicians, courtiers, and mystics. The curiosity that licensed skeptics to transgress against religious orthodoxy also impelled the devout to probe more deeply into God’s marvels. For both the secular-minded and the pious, the boundaries of curiosity grew wider as seafaring explorers discovered new lands and as ingenious technicians opened new telescopic and microscopic vistas. Even as he watches curiosity enlarge its scope, Ball sees it mutate into two different, almost antithetical, manifestations: a pragmatic, agenda-driven desire to expand control over the knowable world, and a spontaneous capacity for contemplative wonder. As the story of how a strange coalition of revolutionaries defied traditional restraints on the hunger for new knowledge, Ball’s history of curiosity tells readers much about the dangerous adventure of being a modern human. --Bryce Christensen

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Book Description Vintage Publishing, United Kingdom, 2013. Paperback. Book Condition: New. Language: English . Brand New Book. There was a time when curiosity was condemned. Through curiosity, our innocence was said to be lost. Yet this hasn t deterred us. Today we spend vast sums trying to recreate the first instants of creation in particle accelerators, out of pure desire to know. There seems now to be no question too vast or too trivial. No longer reviled, curiosity is now celebrated. By examining the rise of curiosity from the dawn of modern science to today, we can examine how it functions in science, how it is spun, packaged and sold, and how the changing shape of science influences the kinds of questions it may ask. Bookseller Inventory # AAZ9780099554271

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Book Description Vintage Publishing, United Kingdom, 2013. Paperback. Book Condition: New. Language: English . Brand New Book. There was a time when curiosity was condemned. Through curiosity, our innocence was said to be lost. Yet this hasn t deterred us. Today we spend vast sums trying to recreate the first instants of creation in particle accelerators, out of pure desire to know. There seems now to be no question too vast or too trivial. No longer reviled, curiosity is now celebrated. By examining the rise of curiosity from the dawn of modern science to today, we can examine how it functions in science, how it is spun, packaged and sold, and how the changing shape of science influences the kinds of questions it may ask. Bookseller Inventory # AAZ9780099554271

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Book Description Vintage. Book Condition: New. 2013. Paperback. By examining the rise of curiosity from the dawn of modern science to today, this book examines how it functions in science, how it is spun, packaged and sold, and how the changing shape of science influences the kinds of questions it may ask. Num Pages: 480 pages. BIC Classification: PDX; PDZ. Category: (P) Professional & Vocational; (U) Tertiary Education (US: College). Dimension: 129 x 197 x 42. Weight in Grams: 454. . . . . . Books ship from the US and Ireland. Bookseller Inventory # V9780099554271

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Book Description Vintage Publishing. Paperback. Book Condition: new. BRAND NEW, Curiosity: How Science Became Interested in Everything, Philip Ball, There was a time when curiosity was condemned. Through curiosity, our innocence was said to be lost. Yet this hasn't deterred us. Today we spend vast sums trying to recreate the first instants of creation in particle accelerators, out of pure desire to know. There seems now to be no question too vast or too trivial. No longer reviled, curiosity is now celebrated. By examining the rise of curiosity from the dawn of modern science to today, we can examine how it functions in science, how it is spun, packaged and sold, and how the changing shape of science influences the kinds of questions it may ask. Bookseller Inventory # B9780099554271

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