Cathedrals of Science

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Cathedrals of Science

Cathedrals of Science

The Personalities and Rivalries That Made Modern Chemistry

  • Author: Patrick Coffey
  • Publisher: Oxford University Press
  • ISBN: 9780199717460
  • Category: Science
  • Page: 400
  • View: 558
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In Cathedrals of Science, Patrick Coffey describes how chemistry got its modern footing-how thirteen brilliant men and one woman struggled with the laws of the universe and with each other. They wanted to discover how the world worked, but they also wanted credit for making those discoveries, and their personalities often affected how that credit was assigned. Gilbert Lewis, for example, could be reclusive and resentful, and his enmity with Walther Nernst may have cost him the Nobel Prize; Irving Langmuir, gregarious and charming, "rediscovered" Lewis's theory of the chemical bond and received much of the credit for it. Langmuir's personality smoothed his path to the Nobel Prize over Lewis. Coffey deals with moral and societal issues as well. These same scientists were the first to be seen by their countries as military assets. Fritz Haber, dubbed the "father of chemical warfare," pioneered the use of poison gas in World War I-vividly described-and Glenn Seaborg and Harold Urey were leaders in World War II's Manhattan Project; Urey and Linus Pauling worked for nuclear disarmament after the war. Science was not always fair, and many were excluded. The Nazis pushed Jewish scientists like Haber from their posts in the 1930s. Anti-Semitism was also a force in American chemistry, and few women were allowed in; Pauling, for example, used his influence to cut off the funding and block the publications of his rival, Dorothy Wrinch. Cathedrals of Science paints a colorful portrait of the building of modern chemistry from the late 19th to the mid-20th century.

Cathedrals of Science

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Cathedrals of Science

Cathedrals of Science

The Development of Colonial Natural History Museums During the Late Nineteenth Century

  • Author: Susan Sheets-Pyenson
  • Publisher: Kingston, Ont. : McGill-Queen's University Press
  • ISBN: 9780773506558
  • Category: Business & Economics
  • Page: 144
  • View: 4442
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By examining the development of museums in the hinterlands of Australasia, Canada, and South America, the author shows how colonial museum directors managed to assemble large and significant collections which included prime materials obtained from abroad.

England's Other Cathedrals

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England's Other Cathedrals

England's Other Cathedrals

  • Author: Paul Jeffery
  • Publisher: The History Press
  • ISBN: 0752490354
  • Category: Social Science
  • Page: 256
  • View: 4266
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England’s great cathedrals are widely considered to be the country’s finest and most beautiful possessions. Few people realise, however, that in addition to these famous buildings there are many others that share, or once shared, some of that greatness. These ‘other cathedrals’ have very varied origins. There were cathedrals established in Anglo-Saxon times that subsequently lost that status. Further cathedrals founded after the Norman Conquest also later ceased. Henry VIII had plans to elevate many great monastic churches to cathedral status, but most were unfulfilled. From the nineteenth century onwards, many new cathedrals have been created, both by the Church of England and by other Churches. Altogether eight groups are discussed, containing in total well over a hundred buildings. Most are fine, and many are or were in their size and magnificence fully comparable with the great cathedrals themselves. Some today stand complete and glorious. Others are now mutilated or in ruin. Some have been completely destroyed, but even these may stir us by their lost glories. Paul Jeffery explores the often fascinating episodes of history that lie behind these groups of magnificent and frequently forgotten buildings. The spotlight is then turned on each one, revealing many architectural and historical treasures.

Masters of the Universe

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Masters of the Universe

Masters of the Universe

Conversations with Cosmologists of the Past

  • Author: Helge Kragh
  • Publisher: OUP Oxford
  • ISBN: 0191034428
  • Category: Science
  • Page: 304
  • View: 3572
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How did our modern picture of the universe come into being? Masters of the Universe tells this fascinating story in an unusual format that blends factual and fictional elements. It is based on a series of interviews that a fictional person conducted with leading astronomers and physicists between 1913 and 1965. Among the interviewed scientists are giants such as Albert Einstein, Edwin Hubble, and George Gamow, but also scientists who are less well known today or not primarily known as cosmologists such as Karl Schwarzschild, Paul Dirac, and Svante Arrhenius. By following the interviews the reader gets a lively and "almost authentic" impression of the problems that faced this early generation of cosmologists. Although the interviews are purely fictional, a product of the author's imagination, they could have taken place in just the way that is described. They are solidly based on historical facts and, moreover, supplemented with careful annotations and references to the literature. In this way the book bridges the gap between scholarly and popular history of science.

I Died for Beauty

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I Died for Beauty

I Died for Beauty

Dorothy Wrinch and the Cultures of Science

  • Author: Marjorie Senechal
  • Publisher: Oxford University Press
  • ISBN: 0199910839
  • Category: Science
  • Page: 312
  • View: 4363
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In the vein of A Beautiful Mind, The Man Who Loved Only Numbers, and Rosalind Franklin: The Dark Lady of DNA, this volume tells the poignant story of the brilliant, colorful, controversial mathematician named Dorothy Wrinch. Drawing on her own personal and professional relationship with Wrinch and archives in the United States, Canada, and England, Marjorie Senechal explores the life and work of this provocative, scintillating mind. Senechal portrays a woman who was learned, restless, imperious, exacting, critical, witty, and kind. A young disciple of Bertrand Russell while at Cambridge, the first women to receive a doctor of science degree from Oxford University, Wrinch's contributions to mathematical physics, philosophy, probability theory, genetics, protein structure, and crystallography were anything but inconsequential. But Wrinch, a complicated and ultimately tragic figure, is remembered today for her much publicized feud with Linus Pauling over the molecular architecture of proteins. Pauling ultimately won that bitter battle. Yet, Senechal reminds us, some of the giants of mid-century science--including Niels Bohr, Irving Langmuir, D'Arcy Thompson, Harold Urey, and David Harker--took Wrinch's side in the feud. What accounts for her vast if now-forgotten influence? What did these renowned thinkers, in such different fields, hope her model might explain? Senechal presents a sympathetic portrait of the life and work of a luminous but tragically flawed character. At the same time, she illuminates the subtler prejudices Wrinch faced as a feisty woman, profound culture clashes between scientific disciplines, ever-changing notions of symmetry and pattern in science, and the puzzling roles of beauty and truth.

The Beauty of Fractals

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The Beauty of Fractals

The Beauty of Fractals

Images of Complex Dynamical Systems

  • Author: Heinz-Otto Peitgen,Peter H. Richter
  • Publisher: Springer Science & Business Media
  • ISBN: 9783540158516
  • Category: Mathematics
  • Page: 199
  • View: 4630
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Now approaching its tenth year, this hugely successful book presents an unusual attempt to publicise the field of Complex Dynamics. The text was originally conceived as a supplemented catalogue to the exhibition "Frontiers of Chaos", seen in Europe and the United States, and describes the context and meaning of these fascinating images. A total of 184 illustrations - including 88 full-colour pictures of Julia sets - are suggestive of a coffee-table book. However, the invited contributions which round off the book lend the text the required formality. Benoit Mandelbrot gives a very personal account, in his idiosyncratic self-centred style, of his discovery of the fractals named after him and Adrien Douady explains the solved and unsolved problems relating to this amusingly complex set.

Science for All

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Science for All

Science for All

The Popularization of Science in Early Twentieth-Century Britain

  • Author: Peter J. Bowler
  • Publisher: University of Chicago Press
  • ISBN: 0226068668
  • Category: Science
  • Page: 352
  • View: 4430
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Recent scholarship has revealed that pioneering Victorian scientists endeavored through voluminous writing to raise public interest in science and its implications. But it has generally been assumed that once science became a profession around the turn of the century, this new generation of scientists turned its collective back on public outreach. Science for All debunks this apocryphal notion. Peter J. Bowler surveys the books, serial works, magazines, and newspapers published between 1900 and the outbreak of World War II to show that practicing scientists were very active in writing about their work for a general readership. Science for All argues that the social environment of early twentieth-century Britain created a substantial market for science books and magazines aimed at those who had benefited from better secondary education but could not access higher learning. Scientists found it easy and profitable to write for this audience, Bowler reveals, and because their work was seen as educational, they faced no hostility from their peers. But when admission to colleges and universities became more accessible in the 1960s, this market diminished and professional scientists began to lose interest in writing at the nonspecialist level. Eagerly anticipated by scholars of scientific engagement throughout the ages, Science for All sheds light on our own era and the continuing tension between science and public understanding.

The Sun in the Church

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The Sun in the Church

The Sun in the Church

Cathedrals as Solar Observatories

  • Author: J. L. Heilbron
  • Publisher: Harvard University Press
  • ISBN: 9780674038486
  • Category: History
  • Page: 384
  • View: 9455
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Between 1650 and 1750, four Catholic churches were the best solar observatories in the world. Built to fix an unquestionable date for Easter, they also housed instruments that threw light on the disputed geometry of the solar system, and so, within sight of the altar, subverted Church doctrine about the order of the universe. A tale of politically canny astronomers and cardinals with a taste for mathematics, "The Sun in the Church" tells how these observatories came to be, how they worked, and what they accomplished. It describes Galileo's political overreaching, his subsequent trial for heresy, and his slow and steady rehabilitation in the eyes of the Catholic Church. And it offers an enlightening perspective on astronomy, Church history, and religious architecture, as well as an analysis of measurements testing the limits of attainable accuracy, undertaken with rudimentary means and extraordinary zeal. Above all, the book illuminates the niches protected and financed by the Catholic Church in which science and mathematics thrived. Superbly written, "The Sun in the Church" provides a magnificent corrective to long-standing oversimplified accounts of the hostility between science and religion.

Cathedrals of Learning

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Cathedrals of Learning

Cathedrals of Learning

Great and Ancient Universities of Western Europe

  • Author: Blaise Cronin
  • Publisher: Chandos Publishing
  • ISBN: 0081005628
  • Category: History
  • Page: 248
  • View: 9859
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Cathedrals of Learning: Great and Ancient Universities of Western Europe provides a conspectus of the great Western European universities, pithily tells their life stories, showcases their architectural heritage, and describes the art, literary, and natural history collections they have accumulated over the centuries. This book profiles the ancient universities and their distinctive organizational cultures, reveals their customs, ceremonies, and traditions, their quirks and quiddities, recounts their complicated histories, describes their architectural wonders (libraries, museums, anatomy theaters, botanical gardens) and treasures (rare manuscripts, antiquities, paintings, and objects d’art of all kinds), and introduces their famous alumni, distinguished scholars, Nobel Prize-winning scientists, and famously eccentric personalities. It is a book for scholars, researchers, and anyone interested in these ancient institutions that remain centers of learning in the contemporary world. Contains a collection of mini biographies, pen portraits of some of the world’s most venerable universities Offers twelve institutional biographies that can be used to compare universities and their complex histories Written in an easy and rigorous style, with accessible coverage Compiled by a leading figure in information science, with a wide experience of great universities and the trends with which they are associated

Science and Technology for the Conservation of Cultural Heritage

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Science and Technology for the Conservation of Cultural Heritage

Science and Technology for the Conservation of Cultural Heritage

  • Author: Miguel Angel Rogerio-Candelera,Massimo Lazzari,Emilio Cano
  • Publisher: CRC Press
  • ISBN: 0203508017
  • Category: Science
  • Page: 446
  • View: 1441
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From 2nd to 5th October 2012 an International Congress on Science and Technology for the conservation of Cultural Heritage was held in Santiago de Compostela, Spain, organized by the Universidade of Santiago de Compostela on behalf of TechnoHeritage Network. The congress was attended by some 160 participants from 10 countries, which presented a total of 145 contributions among plenary lectures, oral, and poster communications. The congress was dedicated to eight topics, namely (1) Environmental assessment and monitoring (pollution, climate change, natural events, etc.) of Cultural Heritage; (2) Agents and mechanisms of deterioration of Cultural Heritage (physical, chemical, biological), including deterioration of modern materials used in Contemporary Art and information storage; (3) Development of new instruments, non invasive technologies and innovative solutions for analysis, protection and conservation of Cultural Heritage; (4) New products and materials for conservation and maintenance of Cultural Heritage; (5) Preservation of industrial and rural heritage from the 19th and 20th centuries; (6) Security technologies, Remote sensing and Geographical Information Systems for protection and management of Cultural Heritage; (7) Significance and social value of Cultural Heritage; and (8) Policies for conservation of Cultural Heritage. This volume publishes a total of ninety-three contributions which reflect some of the most recent responses to the challenge of cultural assets conservation.