Visions of Science (inbunden)
Inbunden (Hardback)
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OUP Oxford
One 8pp colour plate section and 21 black and white illustrations
One 8pp colour plate section and a number of black and white illustrations
234 x 156 x 31 mm
708 g
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Visions of Science (inbunden)

Visions of Science

Books and readers at the dawn of the Victorian age

Inbunden Engelska, 2014-03-27
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Whilst political and social events shook continental Europe, scientific developments were changing the way we understood the world. At the height of this change a series of remarkable books about science were published. In Visions of Science, Jim Secord explores a selection of these titles and how they were received, disseminated, and admired.
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Recensioner i media

Dame Athene Donald, Book of the Year 2014, Times Higher Education It is a useful reminder that science does not always advance in straight lines.

Mike Jay, London Review of Books concise and engaging survey of the popular science literature that transformed the book trade during the 1830s

Ushashi Dasgupta, Times Literary Supplement Visions of Science follows the progress of scientific ideas in the charged years surrounding the Reform Bill of 1832. More than anything, however, it is about the way ideas were exchanged. The result is a compelling work of book history that sheds as much light on the intricacies of the nineteenth-century publishing world as it does on geology or astronomy, and the dual project at the heart of Visions of Science is one of its many strengths.

Jo Elcoat, Chemistry World lucid and lively book ... This book will appeal not only to historians, but to literary scholars keen to move beyond the familiar canon of poetry and prose. And for many other readers, the book will be a fascinating introduction to the first generation to believe that the modern disciplinary sciences could transform the human condition.

The Guardian Visions of Science is a wonderfully lucid account of a complex and often misunderstood era that poses important questions about the way we understand both science and history.

Graham Farmelo, Times Higher Education well-written and handsomely produced volume.

Science Elegantly written, Secords Visions of Science provides its readers with fresh insights into the turbulent decade around 1830, when science was changing from "a relatively esoteric pursuit" into one that would have a huge impact on "the everyday life of all men and women."

Cambridge Online In an accessible style, and with a scholarly grasp of his protagonists, Secord examines seven works which recast the way that science was understood, setting their trajectories within a cultural and social context still dominated by a strongly Christian viewpoint.

Jo Elcoat, Science and Education James Secord provides insightful analyses of seven works published at the dawn of the Victorian age ... He offers a compelling argument that his seven chosen works forged a new reading public that believed scientific knowledge was useful not only in narrow economic terms, but also in its potential for personal fulfilment, moral guidance and wider social regeneration.

Verity Burke, The British Society for Literature and Science Secords superb perspective as a historian opens up and amply justifies the value of examining the publication, materiality and reception of scientific literature in an understudied period of change.

Ruth Barton, Isis Visions provides readings of canonical works that are both accessible to novices and illuminating for experts.

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Övrig information

James A. Secord is professor in the Department of the History and Philosophy of Science at the University of Cambridge and a fellow at Christ's College. He is the author of "Victorian Sensation: The Extraordinary Publication, Reception, and Secret Authorship of Vestiges of the Natural History of Creation," also published by the University of Chicago Press.


Introduction: The Book of Nature and the Pencil of Nature ; 1. The Vision (Humphry Davy's Consolations in Travel, 1830) ; 2. Scientific Conduct: (John Herschel's Preliminary Discourse on the Study of Natural Philosophy, 1830) ; 3. The Constitution of Mind (George Combe's Constitution of Man (1828), Thomas Hope's Essay on the Origin and Prospects of Man (1831), and Thomas Chalmers's The Adaptation of External Nature to the Moral and Intellectual Condition of Man (1833) ; 4. Writers in Steam (Charles Babbage, Reflections on the Decline of Science, 1830) and Thomas Carlyle, Sartor Resartus, 1834)) ; 5. A Philosophy for a New Science (Charles Lyell, Principles of Geology, 1830-33) ; 6. Connecting the Sciences (Mary Somerville, Mechanism of the Heavens (1831) and On the Connexion of the Physical Sciences, 1834) ; 7. Vestiges of Creation ([Robert Chambers], Vestiges of the Natural History of Creation, 1844) ; 8. The Laboratory of Print (From Nicholson's Journal to Nature) ; Conclusion: The Crystal Encyclopaedia