front cover of Accessing Technical Education in Modern Japan
Accessing Technical Education in Modern Japan
Erich Pauer
Amsterdam University Press, 2022
This collection of fourteen key papers deriving from CEEJA’s second international conference exploring the Japanese history of technology, concentrates on the routes to acquiring and transmitting technical knowledge in Japan’s modern era – from the very earliest endeavours in establishing opportunities for acquiring a technical education to the translation of foreign textbooks and manuals. Published in two volumes and thematically structured in three Parts, this wide-ranging work both complements and expands on the subject-matter contained in the first volume entitled Technical Knowledge in Early Modern Japan (2020).

front cover of Ada Lovelace
Ada Lovelace
The Making of a Computer Scientist
Christopher Hollings, Ursula Martin and Adrian Rice
Bodleian Library Publishing, 2018
Ada, Countess of Lovelace (1815­–52), daughter of romantic poet Lord Byron and the highly educated Anne Isabella, is sometimes called the world’s first computer programmer, and she has become an icon for women in technology today. But how did a young woman in the nineteenth century, without access to formal schooling or university education, acquire the knowledge and expertise to become a pioneer of computer science?
            Although it was an unusual pursuit for women at the time, Ada Lovelace studied science and mathematics from a young age. This book uses previously unpublished archival material to explore her precocious childhood—from her curiosity about the science of rainbows to her design for a steam-powered flying horse—as well as her ambitious young adulthood. Active in Victorian London’s social and scientific elite alongside Mary Somerville, Michael Faraday, and Charles Dickens, Ada Lovelace became fascinated by the computing machines of Charles Babbage, whose ambitious, unbuilt invention known as the “Analytical Engine” inspired Lovelace to devise a table of mathematical formulae which many now refer to as the “first program.”
            Ada Lovelace died at just thirty-six, but her work strikes a chord to this day, offering clear explanations of the principles of computing, and exploring ideas about computer music and artificial intelligence that have been realized in modern digital computers. Featuring detailed illustrations of the “first program” alongside mathematical models, correspondence, and contemporary images, this book shows how Ada Lovelace, with astonishing prescience, first investigated the key mathematical questions behind the principles of modern computing.

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Alchemical Laboratory Notebooks and Correspondence
George Starkey
University of Chicago Press, 2004
George Starkey—chymistry tutor to Robert Boyle, author of immensely popular alchemical treatises, and probably early America's most important scientist—reveals in these pages the daily laboratory experimentation of a seventeenth-century alchemist.

The editors present in this volume transcriptions of Starkey's texts, their translations, and valuable commentary for the modern reader. Dispelling the myth that alchemy was an irrational enterprise, this remarkable collection of laboratory notebooks and correspondence reveals the otherwise hidden methodologies of one of the seventeenth century's most influential alchemists.

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Alexander von Humboldt
A Metabiography
Nicolaas A. Rupke
University of Chicago Press, 2008
Alexander von Humboldt (1769–1859) is one of the most celebrated figures of late-modern science, famous for his work in physical geography, botanical geography, and climatology, and his role as one of the first great popularizers of the sciences. His momentous accomplishments have intrigued German biographers from the Prussian era to the fall of the Berlin wall, all of whom configured and reconfigured Humboldt’s life according to the sensibilities of the day.
This volume, the first metabiography of the great scientist, traces Humboldt’s biographical identities through Germany’s collective past to shed light on the historical instability of our scientific heroes.
“Rupke’s study . . . will doubtless become a standard reference for the Humboldt industry and for writers of scientific metabiographies to come.”—Isis
“Engaging. . . . Rupke’s meticulous analysis is fascinating on many scores.”—Times Higher Education Supplement (UK)
“A study borne of considerable scholarship and one with important methodological implications for historians of geography.”—Charles W. J. Withers, Progress in Human Geography

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André Michaux in North America
Journals and Letters, 1785–1797
Translated from the French, Edited, and Annotated by Charlie Williams, Eliane M. Norman, and Walter Kingsley Taylor
University of Alabama Press, 2020
Journals and letters, translated from the original French, bring Michaux’s work to modern readers and scientists
Known to today’s biologists primarily as the “Michx.” at the end of more than 700 plant names, André Michaux was an intrepid French naturalist. Under the directive of King Louis XVI, he was commissioned to search out and grow new, rare, and never-before-described plant species and ship them back to his homeland in order to improve French forestry, agriculture, and horticulture. He made major botanical discoveries and published them in his two landmark books, Histoire des chênes de l’Amérique (1801), a compendium of all oak species recognized from eastern North America, and Flora Boreali-Americana (1803), the first account of all plants known in eastern North America.
Straddling the fields of documentary editing, history of the early republic, history of science, botany, and American studies, André Michaux in North America: Journals and Letters, 1785–1797 is the first complete English edition of Michaux’s American journals. This copiously annotated translation includes important excerpts from his little-known correspondence as well as a substantial introduction situating Michaux and his work in the larger scientific context of the day.
To carry out his mission, Michaux traveled from the Bahamas to Hudson Bay and west to the Mississippi River on nine separate journeys, all indicated on a finely rendered, color-coded map in this volume. His writings detail the many hardships—debilitating disease, robberies, dangerous wild animals, even shipwreck—that Michaux endured on the North American frontier and on his return home. But they also convey the soaring joys of exploration in a new world where nature still reigned supreme, a paradise of plants never before known to Western science. The thrill of discovery drove Michaux ever onward, even ultimately to his untimely death in 1802 on the remote island of Madagascar.

front cover of The Annotated <i>Origin</i>
The Annotated Origin
A Facsimile of the First Edition of On the Origin of Species
Charles DarwinAnnotated by James T. Costa
Harvard University Press, 2009
Charles Darwin’s On the Origin of Species is the most important and yet least read scientific work in the history of science. Now James T. Costa—experienced field biologist, theorist on the evolution of insect sociality, and passionate advocate for teaching Darwin in a society in which a significant proportion of adults believe that life on earth has been created in its present form within the last 10,000 years—has given a new voice to this epochal work. By leading readers line by line through the Origin, Costa brings evolution’s foundational text to life for a new generation.The Annotated Origin is the edition of Darwin’s masterwork used in Costa’s course at Western Carolina University and in Harvard’s Darwin Summer Course at Oxford. A facsimile of the first edition of 1859 is accompanied by Costa’s extensive marginal annotations, drawing on his extensive experience with Darwin’s ideas in the field, lab, and classroom. This edition makes available an accessible, useful, and practical resource for anyone reading the Origin for the first time or for those who want to reread it with the insights and perspective that a working biologist can provide.

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Anton Pannekoek
Ways of Viewing Science and Society
Chaokang Tai
Amsterdam University Press, 2019
Anton Pannekoek (1873-1960), prominent astronomer and world-renowned socialist theorist, stood at the nexus of the revolutions in politics, science and the arts of the early twentieth century. His astronomy was uniquely visual and highly innovative, while his politics were radical. Anton Pannekoek: Ways of Viewing Science and Society collects essays on Pannekoek and his contemporaries at the crossroads of political history, the history of science and art history.

front cover of Archimedes
Fulcrum of Science
Nicholas Nicastro
Reaktion Books, 2024
A bold reimagining of the Greek mathematician’s singular life as a truly modern scientist.
Galileo, Leonardo, Newton, and Tesla revered him: Archimedes of Syracuse—an engineer who single-handedly defied the world’s most powerful army and a mathematician who knew more in 212 BCE than all of Europe would know for the next seventeen centuries. In this bold reimagining, modern polymath Nicholas Nicastro shines a new light on Archimedes’ life and work. Far from the aloof, physically inept figure of historical myth, Archimedes is revealed to be an ambitious, combative, and fiercely competitive man. A genius who challenged an empire, Archimedes emerges in this book as the world’s first fully modern scientist—millennia before his intellectual descendants transformed our world.

front cover of Atoms in the Family
Atoms in the Family
My Life with Enrico Fermi
Laura Fermi
University of Chicago Press, 1995
In this absorbing account of life with the great atomic scientist Enrico Fermi, Laura Fermi tells the story of their emigration to the United States in the 1930s—part of the widespread movement of scientists from Europe to the New World that was so important to the development of the first atomic bomb. Combining intellectual biography and social history, Laura Fermi traces her husband's career from his childhood, when he taught himself physics, through his rise in the Italian university system concurrent with the rise of fascism, to his receipt of the Nobel Prize, which offered a perfect opportunity to flee the country without arousing official suspicion, and his odyssey to the United States.

front cover of August Weismann
August Weismann
Development, Heredity, and Evolution
Frederick B. Churchill
Harvard University Press, 2015

The evolutionist Ernst Mayr considered August Weismann “one of the great biologists of all time.” Yet the man who formulated the germ plasm theory—that inheritance is transmitted solely through the nuclei of the egg and sperm cells—has not received an in-depth historical examination. August Weismann reintroduces readers to a towering figure in the life sciences. In this first full-length biography, Frederick Churchill situates Weismann in the swirling intellectual currents of his era and demonstrates how his work paved the way for the modern synthesis of genetics and evolution in the twentieth century.

In 1859 Darwin’s tantalizing new idea stirred up a great deal of activity and turmoil in the scientific world, to a large extent because the underlying biological mechanisms of evolution through natural selection had not yet been worked out. Weismann’s achievement was to unite natural history, embryology, and cell biology under the capacious dome of evolutionary theory. In his major work on the germ plasm (1892), which established the material basis of heredity in the “germ cells,” Weismann delivered a crushing blow to Lamarck’s concept of the inheritance of acquired traits.

In this deeply researched biography, Churchill explains the development of Weismann’s pioneering work based on cytology and embryology and opens up an expanded history of biology from 1859 to 1914. August Weismann is sure to become the definitive account of an extraordinary life and career.


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