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Twin Tracks

Author: James Burke
Publisher: Simon and Schuster
ISBN: 9781439128756
Size: 25.15 MB
Format: PDF, Kindle
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Twin Tracks is a landmark book of real-world stories that investigates the nature of change and divines as never before the unlikely origins of many aspects of contemporary life. In each of the work's twenty-five narratives, we discover how the different outcomes of an important historical event in the past often come together again in the future. Each chapter starts with an event -- such as the U.S. attack on Tripoli in 1804 -- that generates two divergent series of consequences. After tracking each pathway as it ranges far and wide through time and space, Burke shows how the paths finally and unexpectedly converge in the modern world. Twin Tracks pinpoints the myriad ways the future is shaped, whether by love, war, accident, genius, or discovery. For instance, in "The Marriage of Figaro to Stealth Fighter," Burke's twin tracks start with the composer of the opera and the French spy from whose play he stole the plot. The tracks then encompass, among other things, freemasonry, the War of Independence, Captain Cook, jellyfish, Jane Austen, and audio tape. Ultimately, the convergence of the two Figaro tracks sets the stage for the development of Gulf War Stealth aircraft. Wonderfully accessible and lucidly written, Twin Tracks offers an amusing and instructive new view of the past and the future.

The Tragic Idea

Author: Vassilis Lambropoulos
Publisher: A&C Black
ISBN: 1849667616
Size: 14.74 MB
Format: PDF, Docs
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This radical series shows how Classical ideas and material have helped to shape the modern world. The interdisciplinary approach makes stimulating reading for all who welcome the challenge offered by new perspectives on Classical culture. Today we attribute a tragic quality to many things - works, experiences, values, events - but we forget how modern this idea is. This book traces the rise of the tragic idea from early Romanticism to late Modernism. Focusing on succinct, major statements, it maps one of the most absorbing philosophical conversations in modernity: the debate about the tragic meaning of life. This conversation has crossed geographical, linguistic, ideological and religious borders to bring thinkers together in an inquiry into the inner contradictions of liberty. While originally the tragic idea stood for the conflict of freedom and necessity, it gradually absorbed other irreconcilable dialectical collisions. It turned tragedy from a genre into a problem for ethics, aesthetics, criticism, classics, politics, anthropology and psychology, to name but a few. Scholars in these fields today will be fascinated to find human responsibility caught in the tragic web of modern dilemmas. Classicists in particular will be intrigued by the story of how, over the last two centuries, tragedy has acquired a second, parallel life away from the stage.

Connections

Author: James Burke
Publisher: Simon and Schuster
ISBN: 1451685068
Size: 23.97 MB
Format: PDF, Docs
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Connections is a brilliant examination of the ideas, inventions, and coincidences that have culminated in the major technological achievements of today. How did the popularity of underwear in the twelfth century lead to the invention of the printing press? How did the waterwheel evolve into the computer? How did the arrival of the cannon lead eventually to the development of movies? In this highly acclaimed and bestselling book, James Burke brilliantly examines the ideas, inventions, and coincidences that have culminated in the major technological advances of today. With dazzling insight, he untangles the pattern of interconnecting events: the accidents of time, circumstance, and place that gave rise to the major inventions of the world. Says Burke, "My purpose is to acquaint the reader with some of the forces that have caused change in the past, looking in particular at eight innovations—the computer, the production line, telecommunications, the airplane, the atomic bomb, plastics, the guided rocket, and television—which may be most influential in structuring our own futures....Each one of these is part of a family of similar devices, and is the result of a sequence of closely connected events extending from the ancient world until the present day. Each has enormous potential for humankind's benefit—or destruction." Based on a popular TV documentary series, Connections is a fascinating scientific detective story of the inventions that changed history—and the surprising links that connect them.

Contemporary Authors New Revision Series

Author:
Publisher:
ISBN: 9780787667283
Size: 78.88 MB
Format: PDF
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These exciting and unique author profiles are essential to your holdings because sketches are entirely revised and up-to-date, and completely replace the original Contemporary Authors entries. A softcover cumulative index is published twice per year (included in subscription).

The Crimean Doctors

Author: John Shepherd
Publisher: Liverpool University Press
ISBN: 9780853231073
Size: 71.28 MB
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A comprehensive medical history of the Crimean War, this work assesses the role of the British doctors � 6 Army, navy and civilian � 6 while taking account of the contemporary state of medicine and surgery, as well as the limited attention paid to the Army and navy medical services by successive governments before the war.