Science: A Four Thousand Year History

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9780199580279: Science: A Four Thousand Year History
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In Science, Patricia Fara rewrites science's past to provide new ways of understanding and questioning our modern technological society. Sweeping through the centuries from ancient Babylon right up to the latest hi tech experiments in genetics and particle physics, Fara's book also ranges internationally, challenging notions of European superiority by emphasizing the importance of scientific projects based around the world, including revealing discussions of China and the Islamic Empire alongside the more familiar stories about Copernicus's sun centered astronomy, Newton's gravity, and Darwin's theory of evolution.

We see for instance how Muslim leaders encouraged science by building massive libraries, hospitals, and astronomical observatories and we rediscover the significance of medieval Europe long overlooked where, surprisingly, religious institutions ensured science's survival, as the learning preserved in monasteries was subsequently developed in new and unique institutions: universities. Instead of focussing on esoteric experiments and abstract theories, she explains how science belongs to the practical world of war, politics, and business. And rather than glorifying scientists as idealized heroes, she tells true stories about real people men (and some women) who needed to earn their living, who made mistakes, and who trampled down their rivals.

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About the Author:


Patricia Fara lectures in the History and Philosophy of Science at the University of Cambridge and is the Senior Tutor of Clare College. She is the author of numerous books, including Fatal Attraction: Magnetic Mysteries of the Enlightenment and Newton: The Making of Genius. Her writing has appeared in New Scientist, Nature, The Times, and New Statesman, and she writes a regular column for Endeavour.

Review:


"Very well-written and highly readable. The language is clear and the arguments are lucid. Frequent examples and anecdotes enliven dry, theoretical concepts. With the author's engaging style of writing, even those dealing with topics that might not normally have captured one's interest become a pleasure to read."--American Scientist


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Book Description Oxford University Press, United Kingdom, 2010. Paperback. Condition: New. Language: English. Brand new Book. Science: A Four Thousand Year History rewrites science's past. Instead of focussing on difficult experiments and abstract theories, Patricia Fara shows how science has always belonged to the practical world of war, politics, and business. Rather than glorifying scientists as idealized heroes, she tells true stories about real people - men (and some women) who needed to earn their living, who made mistakes, and who trampled down their rivals in their questfor success. Fara sweeps through the centuries, from ancient Babylon right up to the latest hi-tech experiments in genetics and particle physics, illuminating the financial interests, imperial ambitions, and publishing enterprises that have made science the powerful global phenomenon that it is today. She also ranges internationally, illustrating the importance of scientific projects based around the world, from China to the Islamic empire, as well as the more familiar tale of science in Europe, fromCopernicus to Charles Darwin and beyond. Above all, this four thousand year history challenges scientific supremacy, arguing controversially that science is successful not because it is always right - but because people have said that it is right. Seller Inventory # BZE9780199580279

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