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Bursting The Limits Of Time

Author: Martin J. S. Rudwick
Publisher: University of Chicago Press
ISBN: 0226731138
Size: 30.32 MB
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During a revolution of discovery in the late eighteenth and early nineteenth centuries, geologists reconstructed the immensely long history of the earth--and the relatively recent arrival of human life. Bursting the Limits of Time is a herculean effort by one of the world's foremost experts on the history of geology and paleontology to illuminate this scientific breakthrough that radically altered existing perceptions of a human's place in the universe as much as the theories of Copernicus and Darwin did. Rudwick examines here the ideas and practices of earth scientists throughout the Western world to show how the story of what we now call "deep time" was pieced together. He explores who was responsible for the discovery of the earth's history, refutes the concept of a rift between science and religion in dating the earth, and details how the study of the history of the earth helped define a new branch of science called geology. Bursting the Limits of Time is the first detailed account of this monumental phase in the history of science. "Bursting the Limits of Time is a massive work and is quite simply a masterpiece of science history. . . . The book should be obligatory for every geology and history of science library, and is a highly recommended companion for every civilized geologist who can carry an extra 2.4 kg in his rucksack."--Stephen Moorbath, Nature

Worlds Before Adam

Author: Martin J. S. Rudwick
Publisher: University of Chicago Press
ISBN: 0226731308
Size: 51.89 MB
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In the late eighteenth and early nineteenth centuries, scientists reconstructed the immensely long history of the earth—and the relatively recent arrival of human life. The geologists of the period, many of whom were devout believers, agreed about this vast timescale. But despite this apparent harmony between geology and Genesis, these scientists still debated a great many questions: Had the earth cooled from its origin as a fiery ball in space, or had it always been the same kind of place as it is now? Was prehuman life marked by mass extinctions, or had fauna and flora changed slowly over time? The first detailed account of the reconstruction of prehuman geohistory, Martin J. S. Rudwick’s Worlds Before Adam picks up where his celebrated Bursting the Limits of Time leaves off. Here, Rudwick takes readers from the post-Napoleonic Restoration in Europe to the early years of Britain’s Victorian age, chronicling the staggering discoveries geologists made during the period: the unearthing of the first dinosaur fossils, the glacial theory of the last ice age, and the meaning of igneous rocks, among others. Ultimately, Rudwick reveals geology to be the first of the sciences to investigate the historical dimension of nature, a model that Charles Darwin used in developing his evolutionary theory. Featuring an international cast of colorful characters, with Georges Cuvier and Charles Lyell playing major roles and Darwin appearing as a young geologist, Worlds Before Adam is a worthy successor to Rudwick’s magisterial first volume. Completing the highly readable narrative of one of the most momentous changes in human understanding of our place in the natural world, Worlds Before Adam is a capstone to the career of one of the world’s leading historians of science.

Earth S Deep History

Author: M. J. S. Rudwick
Publisher: University of Chicago Press
ISBN: 022620393X
Size: 33.66 MB
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Rudwick tells the gripping story of the gradual realization that the Earth's history has not only been unimaginably long but also astonishingly eventful in utterly unexpected ways.

Georges Cuvier Fossil Bones And Geological Catastrophes

Author: Martin J. S. Rudwick
Publisher: University of Chicago Press
ISBN: 9780226731087
Size: 39.71 MB
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French zoologist Georges Cuvier (1769-1832) helped form and bring credibility to geology and paleontology. Here Martin J. S. Rudwick provides the first modern translation of Cuvier's essential writings on fossils and catastrophes and links these translated texts together with his own insightful narrative and interpretive commentary. "Martin Rudwick has done English-speaking science a considerable service by translating and commenting on Cuvier's work. . . . He guides us through Cuvier's most important writings, especially those which demonstrate his new technique of comparative anatomy."—Douglas Palmer, New Scientist

Scenes From Deep Time

Author: M. J. S. Rudwick
Publisher: University of Chicago Press
ISBN: 9780226731056
Size: 68.88 MB
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How did the earth look in prehistoric times? Scientists and artists collaborated during the half-century prior to the publication of Darwin's Origin of Species to produce the first images of dinosaurs and the world they inhabited. Their interpretations, informed by recent fossil discoveries, were the first efforts to represent the prehistoric world based on sources other than the Bible. Martin J. S. Rudwick presents more than a hundred rare illustrations from the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries to explore the implications of reconstructing a past no one has ever seen.

Science In The Age Of Sensibility

Author: Jessica Riskin
Publisher: University of Chicago Press
ISBN: 0226720799
Size: 51.94 MB
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Empiricism today implies the dispassionate scrutiny of facts. But Jessica Riskin finds that in the French Enlightenment, empiricism was intimately bound up with sensibility. In what she calls a "sentimental empiricism," natural knowledge was taken to rest on a blend of experience and emotion. Riskin argues that sentimental empiricism brought together ideas and institutions, practices and politics. She shows, for instance, how the study of blindness, led by ideas about the mental and moral role of vision and by cataract surgeries, shaped the first school for the blind; how Benjamin Franklin's electrical physics, ascribing desires to nature, engaged French economic reformers; and how the question of the role of language in science and social life linked disputes over Antoine Lavoisier's new chemical names to the founding of France's modern system of civic education. Recasting the Age of Reason by stressing its conjunction with the Age of Sensibility, Riskin offers an entirely new perspective on the development of modern science and the history of the Enlightenment.

The Meaning Of Fossils

Author: Martin J. S. Rudwick
Publisher: University of Chicago Press
ISBN: 022614898X
Size: 25.44 MB
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"It is not often that a work can literally rewrite a person's view of a subject. And this is exactly what Rudwick's book should do for many paleontologists' view of the history of their own field."—Stephen J. Gould, Paleobotany and Palynology "Rudwick has not merely written the first book-length history of palaeontology in the English language; he has written a very intelligent one. . . . His accounts of sources are rounded and organic: he treats the structure of arguments as Cuvier handled fossil bones."—Roy S. Porter, History of Science

From Mineralogy To Geology

Author: Rachel Laudan
Publisher: University of Chicago Press
ISBN: 9780226469478
Size: 24.38 MB
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"A fine treatment of this critical time in geology's history. Although it goes against our standard histories of the field, Laudan defends her views convincingly. Her style is direct, with carefully reasoned personal opinions and interpretations clearly defined."—Jere H. Lipps, The Scientist

The Science Of Describing

Author: Brian W. Ogilvie
Publisher: University of Chicago Press
ISBN: 0226620867
Size: 67.35 MB
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Out of the diverse traditions of medical humanism, classical philology, and natural philosophy, Renaissance naturalists created a new science devoted to discovering and describing plants and animals. Drawing on published natural histories, manuscript correspondence, garden plans, travelogues, watercolors, and drawings, The Science of Describing reconstructs the evolution of this discipline of description through four generations of naturalists. In the late fifteenth and early sixteenth centuries, naturalists focused on understanding ancient and medieval descriptions of the natural world, but by the mid-sixteenth century naturalists turned toward distinguishing and cataloguing new plant and animal species. To do so, they developed new techniques of observing and recording, created botanical gardens and herbaria, and exchanged correspondence and specimens within an international community. By the early seventeenth century, naturalists began the daunting task of sorting through the wealth of information they had accumulated, putting a new emphasis on taxonomy and classification. Illustrated with woodcuts, engravings, and photographs, The Science of Describing is the first broad interpretation of Renaissance natural history in more than a generation and will appeal widely to an interdisciplinary audience.

The Great Devonian Controversy

Author: Martin J. S. Rudwick
Publisher: University of Chicago Press
ISBN: 0226731022
Size: 42.97 MB
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"Arguably the best work to date in the history of geology."—David R. Oldroyd, Science "After a superficial first glance, most readers of good will and broad knowledge might dismiss [this book] as being too much about too little. They would be making one of the biggest mistakes in their intellectual lives. . . . [It] could become one of our century's key documents in understanding science and its history."—Stephen Jay Gould, New York Review of Books "Surely one of the most important studies in the history of science of recent years, and arguably the best work to date in the history of geology."—David R. Oldroyd, Science