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Science in Traditional China: A Comparative Perspective

Needham, Joseph

Published by Harvard University Press, Cambridge, Mass., 1981
ISBN 10: 0674794389 / ISBN 13: 9780674794382
/ Condition: Very Good / Hardcover
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About the Book

Bibliographic Details

Title: Science in Traditional China: A Comparative ...

Publisher: Harvard University Press, Cambridge, Mass.

Publication Date: 1981

Binding: Hard Cover

Book Condition: Very Good

Dust Jacket Condition: Very Good

Edition: First Edition.


First edition: 1981 on title page, no subsequent printings mentioned on copyright page; co-published with The Chinese University Press, Hong Kong. Bound in red cloth-covered boards with gold lettering on the spine. Book is unmarked; corners sharp, spine ends bumped; flare to the front board. The dust jacket is not priced; edgewear; spine is sun-faded; a half-inch closed tear to bottom of front panel; Brodart protected. Size: 8vo - over 7¾" - 9¾" tall. Bookseller Inventory # 007446

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(16 ratings)


The world's preeminent authority on Chinese science explores the philosophy, social structure, arts, crafts, and even military strategies that form our understanding of Chinese science, making instructive comparisons along the way to similar elements of Indian, Hellenistic, and Arabic cultures.

A major portion of the book concentrates on Taoist alchemy that led not only to the invention of gunpowder and firearms, but also, through the search for macrobiotic life-elixirs, to the rise of modern medical chemistry.

Review: It is pleasant to report thatNeedham-now in his eighty-fifth year-has written another magnificent book... absorbing and stimulating. (New York Review of Books)

Freewheeling, amusing, constantly alert and rarely dogmatic ... Needham keeps the reader aware of the place of China within a comparative context of global scientific discovery... [a] stimulating book. (Jonathan Spcnce New York Times Book Review)

A satisfying taste from the kitchen spoon of a great chef as he prepares an august banquet. It is 100 admirable pages, an honest sample of Needham's comparative method that brightens the shadows in our own history with light reflecting from the unexpected Chinese scene ... this little book [makes] a fine day's sail for readers. (Philip Morrison Scientific American)

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