Saturday, October 21, 2006
Bharat Jan Gyan Vigyan Jatha
Mass Action for National Regenration
Monday 20 December 2004 by BGVS
Our Country is in the midst of a massive upsurge against illiteracy and ill health, against ignorance and indignity. Powerful waves of a people’s movement for literacy, scientific awareness and social change are lashing across the length and breadth of the country.
The Bharat Jan Vigyan Jatha organised by the People’s Science Movements of India in October/November 1987, with the support of the National Council for Science and Technology Communication as well as the Bharat Gyan Vigyan Jatha, organised by Bharat Gyan Vigyan Samiti (BGVS) in October/November 1990 with the support of the National Literacy Mission have played crucial roles in sending this powerful message across.
Born out of people’s science movements and especially the Kerala Sastra Sahitya Parishad (KSSP), the jathas utilise cultural and folk media such as art, dance, theatre and music for massive communication and awareness creation. The All India Jatha organised in May 1985, in memory of the thousands killed in Bhopal could be considered as the point of departure. The true national event, however was the Bharat Jan Vigyan Jatha (BJVJ).
The BJVJ consisted of 5 jathas that travelled 37 days each, covering 500 centres spread over all the major states of the country and culminated in a rally in Bhopal. It engendered the All India People’s Science Network and the NCSTC Network. PSM activists, however, soon realised that thier activities cannot bear fruit so long as two-thirds of the nation remained illiterate. Eradication of illiteracy became an important agenda of science movements.
The Bharat Gyan Vigyan Jatha, organised between the 2nd of October and 14th of November 1990, was one of the most ambitious mass mobilizational and motivational exercises the country and perhaps the whole world, had ever witnessed. It involved more than 5000 artists and several thousands of organizers apart from large number of village, block and district samithis that were formed. Inspite of the vicious atmosphere created by social and political tensions that existed during that period, the jatha succeeded in generating a new sense of optimism in the minds of thousands of social activists, intellectuals and administrators, apart from lakhs and lakhs of ordinary men and women.
The impact of the jatha soon became visible in concrete terms. About 150 districts have by now launched total literacy campaigns. Some of them have already completed the first phase of the campaign and are now moving towards thepost literacy and continuing education phase. About 40 million adult learners are presently attending the literacy classes and more than40 lakh voluntary instructors are engaged in this holy war against illiteracy and ignorance, obscurantism and backwardness.
Source : http://www.bgvs.m2014.net/article.php3?id_article=9
Environment Building - Bharat Gyan Vigyan Jatha -II
9.3.1 An appropriate environment is most crucial for the success of any total literacy campaign. This input is an essential component of the overall strategy of the National Literacy Mission. The positive experience of Bharat Gyan Vigyan Jatha (BGVJ) of 1990 helped. Firstly, while the BGVJ had to content with major caste and communal events, it nevertheless placed literacy as an issue before the people. The involvement of thousands of politicians, administrators, educationalists and media persons taken together with the demand for literacy programmes generated in the villages, brought literacy on to the political agenda of the nation. The Bharat Gyan Vigyan Jatha brought together a number of diverse voluntary organisations, peoples, science movements, individuals and groups, trade unions and service associations, youth and students and women's movements and adult educators. Their networking through the Jatha made literacy work a personal and common organisational priority for thousands all over the country.
9.3.2 The impact of the Bharat Gyan Vigyan Jatha was not uniform all over the country. It was weak especially in Bihar, Uttar Pradesh and Rajasthan. In Orissa and Madhya Pradesh the impact was limited. The limited impact was due to the disturbances caused by the agitations and Political turmoils when Jathas were underway in October/November, 1990.
9.3.3 In order to make another effort to build up environment favourable to the campaign, particularly in these states a BGV-II was launched between 2nd October and 14th November, 1992.
9.3.4 The BGVs also organised a SAMATA Kalajatha between March 8 April 9, 1993 It addressed to the themes of education and
equality of women. The explicit aim was to draw women and women's organisations into the literacy campaign and to highlight the need of education the girl child. The event was marked by nearly 120 young women and men taking out eight women's kalajathas from different parts of the country and converging at Jhansi (U.P) on April 8, 1993.
The Following article has some mention about the BJVJ
Public Understanding of Research in India: Challenges and Prospects
By Dr. Manoj Patairiya
Scientific literacy is necessary for the economic and healthy well being of the social fabric and every person, and for the exercise of participatory democracy. It also implies the ability to respond to the technical issues that pervade and influence our daily lives. It does not mean detailed knowledge of scientific principles, phenomena or technologies, however, it rather points out to the comprehension of what might be called the scientific approach, or the scientific way of conduct or the method of science. Public understanding of research keeps people aware about the latest in the field of research and development and helps them lead a life with better understanding of newer advancements. Developmental change emerges within specific economic, social, and ideological contexts, and in turn reshapes the thinking and working of institutions as well as individuals. The last two decades have been characterized by the rapid development of new scientific and technological advancements across a wide range of fields. Access to these advancements is distributed unevenly within the country. Even people in far flung areas often lack access not only to leading edge technologies, but also modern scientific knowledge. Participatory model of public understanding of research can help in this direction.
India has a rich tradition of communication, especially when it comes to masses. Folk arts, like Nautanki, Ramlila, folk songs and folk dances are immensely effective as the means of mass communication. India has a great tradition and a treasure of scientific heritage. Various classical scientific works were carried out in Indian subcontinent, in the fields of mathematics, astronomy, medicine, material science, etc. during ancient, medieval and modern periods, which still form a huge treasure of our scientific and cultural heritage. However, a remarkable gap between scientific knowledge and the common man remained during the entire span of time. These scientific texts were generally written in technical and classical forms and not in common man’s language. With the passage of time, despite many political and social ups and downs, scientific knowledge and more precisely custodians of that knowledge mostly remained centered around the corridors of power. After Independence, science popularization was being taken up at various levels. The Scientific Policy Resolution of March 4, 1958 has been a guiding factor for development of science and technology in the country. With a view to integrate, coordinate, catalyze and support the efforts of science communication and science popularization in the country, the Government of India established the National Council for Science and Technology Communication (NCSTC) in 1982 as an apex body.
We have been using various means and modes for science communication, as follows:
(a) Print Media: Such as newspapers, magazines, wallpapers, books, posters, folders, booklets.
(b) Audio/Visual Media: Mainly radio and TV, besides, films, slide shows, bioscope.
(c) Folk Media: It has been a common observation, that through folk media, it is possible to achieve penetration to the segments where other media have limitations. Puppet shows, street plays skits, stage performances, folk songs and folk dances, nautanki and other traditional means of communication belong to this category. This media is cost effective, entertaining and offers two-way communication.
(d) Interactive Media: Science exhibitions, science fairs, seminars, workshops, lectures, scientific tours, conferences, vigyan jathas, etc. The advantage here being man-to-man and two-way communication.
(e) Digital Media: information technology has given birth to comparatively a new media, known as digital media It includes Internet, CD-ROM, multimedia, simulations, etc. It has also made science communication simpler to handicapped segments of the society.
That apart, we are popularizing science through our 18 regional languages, to penetrate into local populace effectively. Selection of target audience has greatest significance. Our science communication efforts are aimed at various target groups, such as, common man, children, students, farmers, women, workers or specialists, etc. Various forms for presentation are being used to making science communication more interesting and enjoyable, such as science news, report, article, feature, story, play, poem, interview, discussion, lecture, documentary, docu-drama, scientoon (science +cartoon), satire, etc.
Some of the important modes and means of science communication in India are summarized below:
1. Popular S&T literature (articles/features in daily newspapers, periodicals; newsletters and specialized S&T magazines: comic strips, picture-cum-story books, wall charts etc.)
2. Exhibitions of S&T themes (temporary, permanent and mobile).
3. S&T and Natural History Museums (with permanent galleries on basic topics, on country’s heritage and on famous discoveries and inventions, among others).
4. Science Centres and Parks (participatory and interactive activities and demonstrations to learn about S&T principles, applications and to encourage development of a spirit of inquiry among children and adults).
5. Contests (quizzes, essays, scientific models, toy/kit, public speaking, debates, seminars).
6. Popular lectures on S&T subjects (for general public, for children a students at schools, colleges, universities and other institutions).
7. Tours (guided tours around botanical, zoological gardens, museums, planetaria, bird sanctuaries, etc.).
8. Planetaria (including mobile ones; sky watching with naked eyes or telescope to learn about planets, stars and other celestial objects).
9. Radio broadcasts (for general as well as specific audiences).
10. Television telecasts (for general as well as specific audiences).
11. Audio/video-programmes (tapes for special or general audiences; slide shows, bioscope).
12. Digital software, CD-ROMs, etc. (for special or general audiences).
13. Science Films (for general and specific audiences).
14. Folk forms (song and drama, street plays, puppet shows, march, festival, fairs, jathas, etc.).
15. Low cost kit/toys and other hands-on-activities (with specific training modules).
16. Non formal science education.
Following are a few examples, where major achievements were recorded :
a) A 144-part radio serial Human Evolution was jointly produced by NCSTC and All India Radio, which was broadcast weekly simultaneously from nearly 84 radio stations all over the country in 18 Indian languages. Among the listeners there were 1,00,000 children and some 10,000 schools registered as dedicated listeners. They were provided kits, posters, etc. as supplementary material. A 13-part film serial on the history of science and technology in the Indian subcontinent and its impact on the world, titled Bharat Ki Chhaap.
b) Bharat Jan Vigyan Jatha-1987 and Bharat Jan Gyan Vigyan Jatha-1992 were catalyzed by NCSTC, could be considered as the biggest ever science and technology communication experiment attempted anywhere. The main themes included health, water, environment, appropriate technology, superstitions, scientific thinking and literacy. Some 2,500 government/non-government organizations were actively involved. The Jatha covered nearly 40,000 locations in about 400 districts touching almost a third of the country's population. During the course of Jatha, various modes of science communication, especially folk forms, publications, lecture-cum-demonstrations, etc. were employed for science communication among people.
c) The first ever National Children's Science Congress (NCSC), with the focal theme Know your Environment was organized by the NCSTC Network in December, 1993. The children were selected on the basis of their presentations on their scientific projects at the district level Congresses, followed by state level presentations and finally for the National Congress. The main aim of the congress was to provide open laboratory of the nature for learning with joy and to adopt the method of learning-by-doing. Participation was open to children of the age group 10 to 17 years. Till now 10 such congresses have been organized at different places in the country.
d) Scientific explanation of so called miracles is a very popular programme implemented across the country, wherein various tricks and miracles are demonstrated and explained by trained science activists to making gullible people aware about the scientific tricks/facts behind such so called miracles, so that they can be saved from cheating by the self styled god-men. One must remember, when idols started taking milk in 1995, the author demonstrated the phenomenon on television and the hoax was declined as a result.
f) In order to develop trained manpower in the area of science communication, training/ educational programmes are being offered at various levels in our country : i) Short term courses, which are of 3 to 7 day’s duration; the participants are science activists and enthusiasts, whether students of science at higher level or not; ii) Medium term courses, which are of two to four month’s duration; usually for those who wants to improve their science communication skills; and iii) Long term courses, which are of 1 to 2 year’s duration; run at different universities/institutions and offer post graduate degrees or diplomas in science communication. Besides, a correspondence course in science journalism of one-year duration is also available.
In spite of well-planed and well-structured efforts of science communication in India, there are certain challenges before us, to be met. Some of them are listed below:
a) We have yet to make a dent towards wiping out superstitions prevailing for the ages and people are still ignorant about common scientific principles of day-to-day life.
b) Illiteracy and ignorance are major challenges. The level of literacy has increased as compared to earlier times, though it has not reached the desirable level. Scientific literacy is abysmally low in the country.
c) The most significant challenge is our large population and limited resources, due to which most of our efforts come to a standstill, when it comes to masses.
d) As an average, the science coverage in India is around 3%, which we intend to enhance up to 15%, as per a resolution of Indian Science Writers’ Association.
e) The science communication has still not succeeded in attracting the media to the extent that it could appear on the front page or become a lead story, like the politics, films or sports. Mass media has its commercial compulsions, which superimpose all the science communication efforts and leave a negative impact in the minds of the audiences. Instead of including scientific information, they prefer to generate more revenue by including non-scientific, meta-scientific or occult information, etc.
f) It is rather disappointing to note that leading science magazines have ceased their publication, like Science Today, Science Age, Bulletin of Sciences, Research and Industry etc. and Indian editions of foreign science magazines, like Vigyan (Scientific American), World Scientist (La Recherche), etc. could not survive.
g) India has 18 recognized regional languages. Communication in many languages is yet another great challenge, as research information is generally available in English. The quality of scientific translation could not achieve the level of excellence.
h) The science writing is still dry and boring, and interesting styles of writing, like fiction, poetry, satires, skits, discussions, etc. have not found adequate space and time in the media. Even most of the science writers could not contribute sufficiently such an interesting science material. Merely occasional appearance of something in the name of science fiction cannot serve the purpose.
i) The number of capable science communicators and scientific voluntary organizations is alarmingly low and hardly sufficient to cater to the large population.
j) The diverse social, cultural, geographical, economical set-up of the society is yet another challenge to be faced by science communicators.
k) Misleading scientific information, a continuous decay of creativity in presentation, distortion in translation, inconsistency in organizing the contents, lapses in the use of language, and many more deviations can be seen on media frequently.
l) There has been emerging conflict between scientists and communicators. This can be resolved by way of organizing scientists-journalists meets on regular basis.
j) It has been a common observation that most science communication efforts are centered either on children or teachers and most of the organizations are desirous to involve them in a number of activities. Other target groups may also be given equal opportunities.
k) Generally, “science communication” is considered only as “to communicating science” and no importance is given to “science and art of science communication”.
l) Science and engineering are attracting little talent nowadays for pursuing research and higher studies. This is a matter of grave concern that many of the science departments at undergraduate level are left with substantial number of vacant seats for lack of interest by the younger generation in science. This may lead to a crisis in the area of science and technology as well as public understanding of research.
Though challenges are many, we could see some rays of hope. India has been able to take initiatives in a number of newer programmes in the area of science communication, which were not tried out elsewhere and can take lead in these innovative areas to better serve the mankind. Following are some of the prospects:
a) Following the industrial revolution in the western countries, the level of science communication activities was exponentially increased. As such, India is passing through the same stage, in the present time. As the technology advances, the need of scientific information would also increase. Accordingly, the industrial India would soon witness the high time of science communication.
b) As far as science writing and science journalism are concerned, there is ample scope for furthering such efforts in developing countries, especially in South Asian Region. A common science and technology news and features pool can be formed to facilitate writers/journalists to get/exchange information on scientific research.
c) There is a great shortage of properly trained science writers, journalists, communicators, illustrators in various parts of the world, though, a number of training programmes are conducted at various places. Therefore, more training programmes are needed, which may preferably be conducted to give more opportunity to developing countries.
d) The scientific writing in our country today is chiefly limited to describing various aspects of a particular topic, either in a descriptive manner or in praise of it. A large number of our science writers and scientific journals are from the pubic sector and hence it is difficult to expect them to be analytical or self-critical. Further most of the R&D in our country is being carried out in government laboratories and there is hardly any means for the common people to know what scientists are doing. To bring public awareness in our country in the field of research, there is a need for investigative journalism in this field. Whatever is happening in this field, good or bad, proper or improper must be brought before the people, only then science journalism in our country would flourish in its complete form.
e) Despite some encouraging trends in recent years, various ongoing science communication initiatives and programmes at the national level need to be integrated under a single accountable authority to avoid duplication of efforts by multiple agencies.
f) Most of the popular science magazines are depending upon translations, that creates a lot of distortion in the presentation. Generally, science writers tend to prepare a story or a report only siting inside the room, without interacting with scientists or covering on-the–spot reports in the laboratories.
g) Popular science writing in India is still shackled by complacency and over dependence on foreign sources. It is very difficult to get information from a scientific laboratory. The scientists in some organizations are not allowed to talk to the media about the research being carried by them or in their laboratory. This requires a science media centre including a centralized website to facilitate media persons to get research reports well in time.
h) All India Radio has started science news based on the research papers appearing in Indian research journals. Print media can follow similar practice as well.
i) Science communication must not be misunderstood merely as communication of data; it must go beyond data. The logical and rational interpretation must come up to the fore, enabling the target audiences to shape their lives, ideas and thinking, as well.
There is a need of public debates on emerging issues of scientific research which are relevant to the people and are of their immediate concern to enable them to take informed decisions to lead their life in a democratic society. There has been a common belief more recently, that only things having commercial and economic viability will sustain in today’s fast advancing world that is governed and influenced by commercial and economic factors. The issue of increasing influence of commerce on research and problems arising thereof has been the focus of science communicators recently. Things have reached the point where money is making fundamental changes in the way research is done and communicated to the public. Hence, the efforts directed towards enhancing and public understanding of research, though important, tend to face the similar fate and therefore cannot be seen in isolation. This is an issue which scientists, communicators and the public have to take seriously.
 Editor/ Scientist Indian Journal of Science Communication (IJSC), National Council for Science & Technology Communication (NCSTC) & Honorary Secretary Indian Science Writers' Association (ISWA)
25/3, Sector - I, Pushp Vihar, Saket, New Delhi – 110017, India , (phone) 6567373, email@example.com.
This paper was prepared for the workshop, “Public Understanding of Research in the Developing Countries,” held December 8-9, 2002 in Cape Town, South Africa, funded by the U.S. National Science Foundation (NSF INT 0221207) with additional support from South Africa's Foundation for Education, Science and Technology. Proceedings of the workshop can be found at www.pcstnetwork.org/PURworkshop.
Tuesday, August 22, 2006
History of Science
The Scientific Revolution of the sixteenth and early seventeenth century saw the inception of modern scientific methods to guide the evaluation of knowledge. This change is considered to be so fundamental that some — especially philosophers of science and practicing scientists — consider such earlier inquiries into nature to be pre-scientific. Traditionally, historians of science have defined science sufficiently broadly to include those inquiries.
The history of mathematics, history of technology, and history of philosophy are covered in other articles. Mathematics is closely related to, but distinct from science (at least in the modern conception). Technology concerns the creative process of designing useful objects and systems, which differs from the search for empirical truth. Philosophy differs from science in that, while both the natural and the social sciences attempt to base their theories on established fact, philosophy also enquires about other areas of knowledge, notably ethics. In practice, each of these fields is heavily used by the others as an external tool.
1 Theories and sociology of the history of science
2 Pre-experimental "science"
3 Early cultures
4 Science in China
5 The Middle Ages
5.1 Medieval Indian science and technology
5.2 Medieval Islamic and European science
5.2.1 Islamic philosophy
5.2.2 European Renaissance from the 12th century
6 The Scientific Revolution
7 Modern science
7.1 Natural sciences
7.1.5 Biology, medicine, and genetics
7.2 Social sciences
7.2.1 Political science
7.3 Emerging disciplines
8 See also
11 External links
Theories and sociology of the history of science
Much of the study of the history of science has been devoted to answering questions about what science is, how it functions, and whether it exhibits large-scale patterns and trends. The sociology of science in particular has focused on the ways in which scientists work, looking closely at the ways in which they "produce" and "construct" scientific knowledge. Since the 1960s, a common trend in the science studies (the study of the sociology and history of science) has been to emphasize the "human component" to scientific knowledge, and to de-emphasize the view that scientific data is self-evident, value-free, and context-free.
A major subject of concern and controversy in the philosophy of science has been to inquire about the nature of theory change in science. Three philosophers in particular who represent the primary poles in this debate have been Karl Popper, who argued that scientific knowledge is progressive and cumulative; Thomas Kuhn, who argued that scientific knowledge moves through "paradigm shifts" and is not necessarily progressive; and Paul Feyerabend, who argued that scientific knowledge is not cumulative or progressive, and that there can be no demarcation between science and any other form of investigation.
Since the publication of Kuhn's The Structure of Scientific Revolutions in 1962, there has been much debate in the academic community over the meaning and objectivity of "science." Often, but not always, a conflict over the "truth" of science has split along the lines of those in the scientific community and those in the social sciences or humanities (for example, the "Science wars").
In the West, from antiquity up to the time of the Scientific Revolution, inquiry into the workings of the universe was known as natural philosophy, and those engaged in it were known as natural philosophers. This included some fields of study which are no longer considered scientific. Bertrand Russell's History of Philosophy gives a good account of the historical development of (natural) philosophy. In many cases, systematic learning about the natural world was a direct outgrowth of religion, often as a project of a particular religious community.
One important feature of "pre-scientific" inquiry (whether in the West or elsewhere) was reluctance to engage in experiment. For example, Aristotle, one of the most prolific natural philosophers of antiquity, made countless observations of nature, especially the habits and attributes of plants and animals. Aristotle focused on categorizing. He also made many observations on the large-scale workings of the universe, which led to the development of a comprehensive theory of physics; see Physics (Aristotle). In Taoist philosophy, for example, the tradition of wu wei (action without action), would deprecate the setting up of artificial conditions in an experiment in fear they would produce contrived results that could never describe nature as it is in the world around us. This continued until the development of experiment in the Islamic world in the 7th and 8th centuries.
Main articles: History of science in early cultures and Alchemy
In prehistoric times, advice and knowledge was passed from generation to generation in an oral tradition. The development of writing enabled knowledge to be stored and communicated across generations with much greater fidelity. Combined with the development of agriculture, which allowed for a surplus of food, it became possible for early civilizations to develop, because more time could be devoted to tasks other than survival.
Many ancient civilizations collected astronomical information in a systematic manner through simple observation. Though they had no knowledge of the real physical structure of the planets and stars, many theoretical explanations were proposed.
Basic facts about human physiology were known in some places, and alchemy was practiced in several civilizations. Considerable observation of macrobiotic flora and fauna was also performed.
Science in China
Main article: Four Great Inventions of ancient China
It has been thanks to Joseph Needham that the vast achievements of Chinese science and technology have been uncovered. Amongst other things, the Chinese invented gunpowder, the compass, the kite, the balloon, printing and many other things. They also made innovations in mathematics, logic, astronomy, medicine, and numerous other fields.
See also History of science and technology in China
The Middle Ages
Medieval Indian science and technology
Main articles: Indian science and Indian science and technology
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Before the Middle Ages, Indian philosophers in ancient India developed atomic theories, which included formulating ideas about the atom in a systematic manner and propounding ideas about the atomic constitution of the material world. The principle of relativity was also available in an early embryonic form in the Indian philosophical concept of "sapekshavad". The literal translation of this Sanskrit word is "theory of relativity" (not to be confused with Einstein's theory of relativity).
By the beginning of the Middle Ages, the wootz, crucible and stainless steels were discovered in India. By the end of the Middle Ages, iron rockets were developed in the kingdom of Mysore in South India.Aryabhata in 499 presented a heliocentric solar system of gravitation where he presented astronomical and mathematical theories in which the Earth was taken to be spinning on its axis and the periods of the planets were given as elliptical orbits with respect to the sun. He also believed that the moon and planets shine by reflected sunlight and that the orbits of the planets are ellipses. He carried out accurate calculations of astronomical constants based on this system, such as the periods of the planets, the circumference of the earth, the solar eclipse and lunar eclipse, the time taken for a single rotation of the Earth on its axis, the length of earth's revolution around the sun, and the longitudes of planets using eccentrics and epicycles. He also introduced a number of trigonometric functions (including sine, versine, cosine and inverse sine), trigonometric tables, and techniques and algorithms of algebra. Arabic translations of his texts were available in the Islamic world by the 8th-10th century.
In the 7th century, Brahmagupta briefly described the law of gravitation, and recognized gravity as a force of attraction. He also lucidly explained the use of zero as both a placeholder and a decimal digit, along with the Hindu-Arabic numerals now used universally throughout the world. Arabic translations of his texts (around 770) introduced this number system to the Islamic world, where it was adapted as Arabic numerals.
The Siddhanta Shiromani was a mathematical astronomy text written by Bhaskara in the 12th century. The 12 chapters of the first part cover topics such as: mean longitudes of the planets; true longitudes of the planets; the three problems of diurnal rotation; syzygies; lunar eclipses; solar eclipses; latitudes of the planets; risings and settings; the moon's crescent; conjunctions of the planets with each other; conjunctions of the planets with the fixed stars; and the patas of the sun and moon. The second part contains thirteen chapters on the sphere. It covers topics such as: praise of study of the sphere; nature of the sphere; cosmography and geography; planetary mean motion; eccentric epicyclic model of the planets; the armillary sphere; spherical trigonometry; ellipse calculations; first visibilities of the planets; calculating the lunar crescent; astronomical instruments; the seasons; and problems of astronomical calculations.
From the 12th century, Bhaskara and various Keralese mathematicians first conceived differential calculus, mathematical analysis, trigonometric series, floating point numbers, and concepts foundational to the overall development of calculus.
Medieval Islamic and European science
Main article: History of science in the Middle Ages
With the loss of the Western Roman Empire, much of Europe lost contact with the knowledge of the past. While the Byzantine Empire still held learning centers such as Alexandria and Constantinople, Western Europe's knowledge was concentrated in monasteries. The Library of Alexandria, which had suffered during and after the period of Roman rule, had been destroyed by 642, shortly after the Arab conquest of Egypt. Philosophical and scientific teaching of the period was based upon few copies and commentaries of ancient Greek texts that remained in Western Europe and the Middle East.
Sample of 15th century Islamic medical text
Main article: History of science in the Islamic World
Meanwhile, in the Middle East, Greek philosophy was able to find some support by the newly created Arab Caliphate. With the spread of Islam in the 7th and 8th centuries, a period of Islamic scholarship lasted until the 14th century. This scholarship was aided by several factors. The use of a single language, Arabic, allowed communication without need of a translator. Access to Greek and Roman texts from the Byzantine Empire along with Indian sources of learning provided Islamic scholars a knowledge base to build upon. In addition, there was the Hajj, which facilitated scholarly collaboration by bringing together people and new ideas from all over the Islamic world.
Islamic scientists were crucial in terms of changing the emphasis in science from being a purely rationalist pursuit to one in which empirical data became more important. To this end, they developed the concepts of citation and peer review. Islamic/Arabic scientists also placed far greater emphasis on experiment than had the Greeks. In mathematics, the Persian scholar Muhammad ibn Musa al-Khwarizmi gave his name to the Indian concept of the algorithm, while the term algebra is derived from al-jabr, the beginning of the title of one of his publications. Sabian mathematician Al-Batani (850-929) contributed to astronomy and mathematics and Persian scholar Al-Razi to chemistry. In astronomy, Al-Batani improved the measurements of Hipparchus, preserved in the translation of the Greek Hè Megalè Syntaxis (The great treatise) translated as Almagest. Al-Batani also improved the precision of the measurement of the precession of the earth's axis. Arab alchemy, though flawed as a science, inspired Roger Bacon (who introduced the empirical method to Europe, strongly influenced by his reading of Arabic writers), and later Isaac Newton.
European Renaissance from the 12th century
Main articles: Renaissance of the 12th century, Scholasticism, Medieval technology, and History of science in the Middle Ages
Map of Medieval Universities
An intellectual revitalization of Europe started with the birth of medieval universities in the 12th century. The contact with the Islamic world in Spain and Sicily after the Reconquista and during the Crusades allowed Europeans access to preserved copies of the Ancient Greek and Roman works along with the works of Islamic philosophers, specially Averroes. The European universities aided materially in the translation and propagation of these texts and started a new infrastructure which was needed for scientific communities. As well as this, Europeans began to venture further and further east (most notably, perhaps, Marco Polo) as a result of the Pax Mongolica. This led to the increased influence of Indian and even Chinese science on the European tradition. Technological advances were also made, such as the early flight of Eilmer of Malmesbury, who had studied Mathematics in 11th century England . It cannot be stressed enough that at this point in history European science was substantially less developed than Islamic, Indian and Chinese science. For the next four centuries, Europe would play 'catch up'.
At the beginning of the 13th century there were reasonably accurate Latin translations of the main works of almost all the intellectually crucial ancient authors, allowing a sound transfer of scientific ideas via both the universities and the monasteries. By then, the natural philosophy contained in these texts began to be extended by notable scholastics such as Robert Grosseteste, Roger Bacon, Albertus Magnus and Duns Scotus. Precursors of the modern scientific method can be seen already in Grosseteste's emphasis on mathematics as a way to understand nature, and in the empirical approach admired by Bacon. According to Pierre Duhem, the Condemnation of 1277 led to the birth of modern science, because it forced thinkers to break from relying so much on Aristotle, and to think about the world in new ways.
The first half of the 14th century saw much important scientific work being done. William of Ockham introduced the principle of parsimony: philosophy should only concern itself with subjects on whom it could achieve real knowledge. This should lead to a decline in fruitless debates and move natural philosophy toward science. As a result of the Condemnations of Paris, scholars such as Jean Buridan and Nicolas Oresme started to question the received wisdom of Aristotle's mechanics. In particular, Buridan developed the theory of impetus which was a first step towards the modern concept of inertia. The Oxford Calculators developed this idea further and, influenced by Islamic science began to empirically test some of these ideas.
Leonardo da Vinci's Vitruvian Man, an example of the blend of art and science during the Renaissance
In 1348, the Black Death and other disasters sealed a sudden end to the previous period of massive philosophic and scientific development. Yet, the rediscovery of ancient texts was improved after the Fall of Constantinople in 1453, when many Byzantine scholars had to seek refuge in the West. Meanwhile, the introduction of printing (from China) was to have great effect on European society. The facilitated dissemination of the printed word democratized learning and allowed a faster propagation of new ideas. New ideas also helped to influence the development of European science at this point: not least the introduction of Algebra. These developments paved the way for the Scientific Revolution, which may also be understood as a resumption of the process of scientific change, halted at the start of the Black Death.
The Scientific Revolution
Main article: Scientific Revolution
Modern science in Europe began in a period of great upheaval. The Protestant Reformation, the discovery of the Americas by Christopher Columbus, the Fall of Constantinople, the Spanish Inquisition, but also the re-discovery of Aristotle in the twelfth and thirteenth centuries presaged large social and political changes. Thus, a suitable environment was created in which it became possible to question scientific doctrine, in much the same way that Martin Luther and John Calvin questioned religious doctrine. The works of Ptolemy (astronomy), Galen (medicine), and Aristotle (physics) were found not always to match everyday observations. For example, an arrow flying through the air after leaving a bow contradicts Aristotle's laws of motion, which say that a moving object must be constantly under influence of an external force, as the natural state of earthly objects is to be at rest. Work by Vesalius on human cadavers also found problems with the Galenic view of anatomy.
Vesalius' experiments inspired interest in human anatomy.
The willingness to question previously held truths and search for new answers resulted in a period of major scientific advancements, now known as the Scientific Revolution. The Scientific Revolution is held by most historians to have begun in 1543, when De Revolutionibus, by the astronomer Nicolaus Copernicus, was first printed. The thesis of this book was that the Earth moved around the Sun. The period culminated with the publication of the Philosophiae Naturalis Principia Mathematica in 1687 by Isaac Newton.
Other significant scientific advances were made during this time by Galileo Galilei, Edmond Halley, Robert Hooke, Christiaan Huygens, Tycho Brahe, Johannes Kepler, Gottfried Leibniz, and Blaise Pascal. In philosophy, major contributions were made by Francis Bacon, Sir Thomas Browne, René Descartes, and Thomas Hobbes. The basics of scientific method were also developed: the new way of thinking emphasized experimentation and reason over traditional considerations.
The Scientific Revolution established science as the preeminent source for the growth of knowledge. During the 19th century, the practice of science became professionalized and institutionalized in ways which would continue through the 20th century, as the role of scientific knowledge grew and became incorporated with many aspects of the functioning of nation-states.
Main article: History of physics
The Scientific Revolution is a convenient boundary between ancient thought and classical physics. Nicolaus Copernicus revived the heliocentric model of the solar system first devised by Aristarchus of Samos. This was followed by the first known model of planetary motion given by Kepler in the early 17th century, which proposed that the planets follow elliptical orbits, with the Sun at one focus of the ellipse. Also, Galileo pioneered the use of experiment to validate physical theories, a key idea in scientific method.
James Clerk Maxwell
In 1687, Isaac Newton published the Principia Mathematica, detailing two comprehensive and successful physical theories: Newton's laws of motion, which lead to classical mechanics; and Newton's Law of Gravitation, which describes the fundamental force of gravity. The behavior of electricity and magnetism was studied by Faraday, Ohm, and others during the early 19th century. These studies led to the unification of the two phenomena into a single theory of electromagnetism, by Maxwell (known as Maxwell's equations).
Diagram of the expanding universe
The beginning of the 20th century brought the start of a revolution in physics. The long-held theories of Newton were shown not to be correct in all circumstances. Beginning in 1900, Max Planck, Albert Einstein, Niels Bohr and others developed quantum theories to explain various anomalous experimental results, by introducing discrete energy levels. Not only did quantum mechanics show that the laws of motion did not hold on small scales, but even more disturbingly, the theory of general relativity, proposed by Einstein in 1915, showed that the fixed background of spacetime, on which both Newtonian mechanics and special relativity depended, could not exist. In 1925, Werner Heisenberg and Erwin Schrödinger formulated quantum mechanics, which explained the preceding quantum theories. The observation by Edwin Hubble in 1929 that the speed at which galaxies recede positively correlates with their distance, led to the understanding that the universe is expanding, and the formulation of the Big Bang theory by George Gamow.
The development of the atomic bomb ushered in the era of "Big Science" in physics.
Further developments took place during World War II, which led to the practical application of radar and the development and use of the atomic bomb. Though the process had begun with the invention of the cyclotron by Ernest O. Lawrence in the 1930s, physics in the postwar period entered into a phase of what historians have called "Big Science", requiring massive machines, budgets, and laboratories in order to test their theories and move into new frontiers. The primary patron of physics became state governments, who recognized that the support of "basic" research could often lead to technologies useful to both military and industrial applications. Currently, general relativity and quantum mechanics are inconsistent with each other, and efforts are underway to unify the two.
Main article: History of chemistry
The history of modern chemistry can be taken to begin with the distinction of chemistry from alchemy by Robert Boyle in his work The Sceptical Chymist, in 1661 (although the alchemical tradition continued for some time after this) and the gravimetric experimental practices of medical chemists like William Cullen, Joseph Black, Torbern Bergman and Pierre Macquer. It can also be dated Antoine Lavoisier's naming of oxygen and the law of conservation of mass, which refuted phlogiston theory. Proof that all matter is made of atoms, which are the smallest indestructible part of matter, was provided by John Dalton in 1803. He also formulated the law of mass relationships. In 1869, Dmitri Mendeleev composed his periodic table of elements on the basis of Dalton's discoveries.
The synthesis of urea by Friedrich Wöhler opened a new research field, organic chemistry, and by the end of the 19th century, scientists were able to synthesize hundreds of organic compounds. The later part of the nineteenth century saw the exploitation of the Earth's petrochemicals, after the exhaustion of the oil supply from whaling. By the twentieth century, systematic production of refined materials provided a ready supply of products which provided not only energy, but also synthetic materials for clothing, medicine, and everyday disposable resources. Application of the techniques of organic chemistry to living organisms resulted in physiological chemistry, the precursor to biochemistry. The twentieth century also saw the integration of physics and chemistry, with chemical properties explained as the result of the electronic structure of the atom. Linus Pauling's book on The Nature of the Chemical Bond used the principles of quantum mechanics to deduce bond angles in ever-more complicated molecules. Pauling's work culminated in the physical modelling of DNA, the secret of life (in the words of Francis Crick, 1953). In the same year, the Miller-Urey experiment demonstrated in a simulation of primordial processes, that basic constituents of proteins, simple amino acids, could themselves be built up from simpler molecules.
Main article: Geology
Chinese polymath Shen Kua (1031 - 1095) was the first to formulate hypotheses for the process of land formation. Based on his observation of fossils in a geological stratum in a mountain hundreds of miles from the ocean, he deduced that the land was formed by erosion of the mountains and by deposition of silt.
Plate tectonics - seafloor spreading and continental drift illustrated on relief globe
Theophrastus' work on rocks Peri lithōn remained authoritative for millennia: its interpretation of fossils was not overturned until after the Scientific Revolution. During the 1700s Jean-Etienne Guettard and Nicolas Desmarest hiked central France and recorded their observations on geological maps; Guettard recorded the first observation of the volcanic origins of this part of France. James Hutton recorded his Theory of the Earth in 1788, which would later be referred to as Uniformitarianism. In 1811, Georges Cuvier and Alexandre Brongniart published their explanation of the antiquity of the Earth, inspired by Cuvier's discovery of fossil elephant bones in Paris. They formulated the principle of stratigraphic succession of the layers of the earth. Charles Lyell's Principles of Geology reiterated Hutton's Uniformitarianism, which influenced Charles Darwin.
In the 20th century, the main development has been the theory of plate tectonics in the 1960s. Plate tectonic theory (which revolutionized the Earth sciences) arose out of two separate geological observations: seafloor spreading and continental drift. The threat of nuclear war also drove the emergence of seismology and drastic improvements in the Figure of the Earth.
Main article: History of astronomy
Advances in astronomy and in optical systems in the 19th century resulted in the first observation of an asteroid (Ceres) in 1801, and the discovery of Neptune in 1846.
George Gamow, Ralph Alpher, and Robert Hermann had calculated that there should be evidence for a Big Bang in the background temperature of the universe. In 1964, Arno Penzias and Robert Wilson discovered a 3 kelvin background hiss in their Bell Labs radiotelescope, which was evidence for this hypothesis, and formed the basis for a number of results that helped determine the age of the universe.
Supernova SN1987A was observed by astronomers on Earth both visually, and in a triumph for neutrino astronomy, by the solar neutrino detectors at Kamiokande. But the solar neutrino flux was a fraction of its theoretically-expected value. This discrepancy forced a change in some values in the standard model for particle physics.
Biology, medicine, and genetics
Main articles: History of biology, History of molecular biology, History of medicine, and History of evolutionary thought
Semi-conservative DNA replication
In 1847, Hungarian physician Ignác Fülöp Semmelweis dramatically reduced the occurrency of puerperal fever by the simple experiment of requiring physicians to wash their hands before attending to women in childbirth. This discovery predated the germ theory of disease. However, Semmelweis' findings were not appreciated by his contemporaries and came into use only with discoveries by British surgeon Joseph Lister, who in 1865 proved the principles of antisepsis. Lister's work was based on the important findings by French biologist Louis Pasteur. Pasteur was able to link microorganisms with disease, revolutionizing medicine. He also devised one of the most important methods in preventive medicine, when in 1880 he produced a vaccine against rabies. Pasteur invented the process of pasteurization, to help prevent the spread of disease through milk and other foods.
Perhaps the most prominent and far-reaching theory in all of science has been the theory of evolution by natural selection put forward by the British naturalist Charles Darwin in his On the Origin of Species in 1859. Darwin's theory proposed that all differences in animals were formed by natural processes over long periods of time, and that even humans were simply evolved organisms. Implications of evolution on fields outside of pure science have led to both opposition and support from different parts of society, and profoundly influenced the popular understanding of "man's place in the universe". In the early 20th century, the study of heredity became a major investigation after the rediscovery in 1900 of the laws of inheritance developed by the Austrian monk Gregor Mendel in 1866. Mendel's laws provided the beginnings of the study of genetics, which became a major field of research for both scientific and industrial research. By 1953, James Watson and Francis Crick clarified the basic structure of DNA, the genetic material for expressing life in all its forms. In the late 20th century, the possibilities of genetic engineering became practical for the first time, and a massive international effort began in 1990 to map out an entire human genome (the Human Genome Project) has been touted as potentially having large medical benefits.
Main article: History of ecology
Earthrise over the Moon, Apollo 8, NASA. This image helped create awareness of the finiteness of Earth, and the limits of its natural resources.
The discipline of ecology typically traces its origin to the synthesis of Darwinian evolution and Humboldtian biogeography, in the late 19th and early 20th centuries. Equally important in the rise of ecology, however, were microbiology and soil science—particularly the cycle of life concept, prominent in the work Louis Pasteur and Ferdinand Cohn. The word ecology was coined by Ernst Haeckel, whose particularly holistic view of nature in general (and Darwin's theory in particular) was important in the spread of ecological thinking. In the 1930's, Arthur Tansley and others began developing the field of ecosystem ecology, which combined experimental soil science with physiological concepts of energy and the techniques of field biology. The history of ecology in the 20th century is closely tied to that of environmentalism; the Gaia hypothesis in the 1960s and more recently the scientific-religious movement of Deep Ecology have brought the two closer together.
Successful use of the scientific method in the physical sciences led to the same methodology being adapted to better understand the many fields of human endeavor. From this effort the social sciences have been developed.
Main article: History of political science
While the study of politics is first found in the Western tradition in Ancient Greece, political science is a late arrival in terms of social sciences. However, the discipline has a clear set of antecedents such as moral philosophy, political philosophy, political economy, history, and other fields concerned with normative determinations of what ought to be and with deducing the characteristics and functions of the ideal state. In each historic period and in almost every geographic area, we can find someone studying politics and increasing political understanding.
The antecedents of politics trace their roots back even earlier than Plato and Aristotle, particularly in the works of Homer, Hesiod, Thucydides, Xenophon, and Euripides. Later, Plato analyzed political systems, abstracted their analysis from more literary- and history- oriented studies and applied an approach we would understand as closer to philosophy. Similarly, Aristotle built upon Plato's analysis to include historical empirical evidence in his analysis.
During the rule of Rome, famous historians such as Polybius, Livy and Plutarch documented the rise of the Roman Republic, and the organization and histories of other nations, while statesmen like Julius Caesar, Cicero and others provided us with examples of the politics of the republic and Rome's empire and wars. The study of politics during this age was oriented toward understanding history, understanding methods of governing, and describing the operation of governments.
With the fall of the Roman Empire, there arose a more diffuse arena for political studies. The rise of monotheism and, particularly for the Western tradition, Christianity, brought to light a new space for politics and political action. During the Middle Ages, the study of politics was widespread in the churches and courts. Works such as Augustine of Hippo's The City of God synthesized current philosophies and political traditions with those of Christianity, redefining the borders between what was religious and what was political. Most of the political questions surrounding the relationship between church and state were clarified and contested in this period.
In the Middle East and later other Islamic areas, works such as the Rubaiyat of Omar Khayyam and Epic of Kings by Ferdowsi provided evidence of political analysis, while the Islamic aristotelians such as Avicenna and later Maimonides and Averroes, continued Aristotle's tradition of analysis and empiricism, writing commentaries on Aristotle's works.
During the Italian Renaissance, Niccolò Machiavelli established the emphasis of modern political science on direct empirical observation of political institutions and actors. Later, the expansion of the scientific paradigm during the Enlightenment further pushed the study of politics beyond normative determinations.
Main article: History of linguistics
Historical linguistics emerged as an independent field of study at the end of the 18th century. Sir William Jones proposed that Sanskrit, Persian, Greek, Latin, Gothic, and Celtic languages all shared a common base. After Jones, an effort to catalog all languages of the world was made throughout the 19th century and into the 20th century. Publication of Ferdinand de Saussure's Cours de linguistique générale spawned the development of descriptive linguistics. Descriptive linguistics, and the related structuralism movement caused linguistics to focus on how language changes over time, instead of just describing the differences between languages. Noam Chomsky further diversified linguistics with the development of generative linguistics in the 1950s. His effort is based upon a mathematical model of language that allows for the description and prediction of valid semantics. Additional specialties such as sociolinguistics, cognitive linguistics, and computational linguistics have emerged from collaboration between linguistics and other disciplines.
Main article: History of economic thought
The supply and demand model
The basis for classical economics forms Adam Smith's An Inquiry into the Nature and Causes of the Wealth of Nations, published in 1776. Smith criticized mercantilism, advocating a system of free trade with division of labour. He postulated an "Invisible Hand" that large economic systems could be self-regulating through a process of enlightened self-interest. Karl Marx developed an alternative economical system, called Marxian economics. Marxian economics is based on the labor theory of value and assumes the value of good to be based on the amount of labor required to produce it. Under this assumption, capitalism was based on employeers not paying the full value of workers labor to create profit. The Austrian school responded to Marxian economics by viewing entrepreneurship as driving force of economic development. This replaced the labor theory of value by a system of supply and demand.
In the 1920s, John Maynard Keynes prompted a division between microeconomics and macroeconomics. Under Keynesian economics macroeconomic trends can overwhelm economic choices made by individuals. Governments should promote aggregate demand for goods as a means to encourage economic expansion. Following World War II, Milton Friedman created the concept of monetarism. Monetarism focuses on using the supply and demand of money as a method for controlling economic activity. In the 1970s, monetarism has adapted into supply-side economics which advocates reducing taxes as a means to increase the amount of money available for economic expansion.
Other modern schools of economic thought are New Classical economics and New Keynesian economics. New Classical economics was developed in the 1970s, emphasizing solid microeconomics as the basis for macroeconomic growth. New Keynesian economics was created partially in response to New Classical economics, and deals with how inefficiencies in the market create a need for control by a central bank or government.
Main article: History of psychology
Sigmund Freud's couch
The end of the 19th century marks the start of psychology as a scientific enterprise. The year 1879 is commonly seen as the start of psychology as an independent field of study. In that year Wilhelm Wundt founded the first laboratory dedicated exclusively to psychological research (in Leipzig). Other important early contributors to the field include Hermann Ebbinghaus (a pioneer in memory studies), Ivan Pavlov (who discovered classical conditioning), and Sigmund Freud. Freud's influence has been enormous, though more as cultural icon than a force in scientific psychology. Freud's basic theories postulated the existence in humans of various unconscious and instinctive "drives", and that the "self" existed as a perpetual battle between the desires and demands of the internal id, ego, and superego.
The 20th century saw a rejection of Freud's theories as being too unscientific, and a reaction against Edward Titchener's atomistic approach of the mind. This led to the formulation of behaviorism by John B. Watson, which was popularized by B.F. Skinner. Behaviorism proposed epistemologically limiting psychological study to overt behavior, since that could be reliably measured. Scientific knowledge of the "mind" was considered too metaphysical, hence impossible to achieve. The final decades of the 20th century have seen the rise of a new interdisciplinary approach to studying human psychology, known collectively as cognitive science. Cognitive science again considers the mind as a subject for investigation, using the tools of evolutionary psychology, linguistics, computer science, philosophy, and neurobiology. This new form of investigation has proposed that a wide understanding of the human mind is possible, and that such an understanding may be applied to other research domains, such as artificial intelligence.
Main article: History of sociology
Max Weber was a strong influence in the history of sociology.
Ibn Khaldun is regarded as the founder of modern sociology. As a scientific discipline, sociology emerged in the early 19th century as the academic response to the modernization of the world. Among many early sociologists (e.g., Émile Durkheim), the aim of sociology was in structuralism, understanding the cohesion of social groups, and developing an "antidote" to social disintegration. Max Weber was concerned with the modernization of society through the concept of rationalization, which he believed would trap individuals in an "iron cage" of rational thought. Some sociologists, including Georg Simmel and W. E. B. Du Bois, utilized more microsociological, qualitative analyses. This microlevel approach played an important role in American sociology, with the theories of George Herbert Mead and his student Herbert Blumer resulting in the creation of the symbolic interactionism approach to sociology.
American sociology in the 1940s and 1950s was dominated largely by Talcott Parsons, who argued that aspects of society that promoted structural integration were therefore "functional". This structural functionalism approach was questioned in the 1960s, when sociologists came to see this approach as merely a justification for inequalities present in the status quo. In reaction, conflict theory was developed, which was based in part on the philosophies of Karl Marx. Conflict theorists saw society as an arena in which different groups compete for control over resources. Symbolic interactionism also came to be regarded as central to sociological thinking. Erving Goffman saw social interactions as a stage performance, with individuals preparing "backstage" and attempting to control their audience through impression management. While these theories are currently the prominent in sociological thought, other approaches exist, including feminist theory, post-structuralism, rational choice theory, and postmodernism.
Main article: History of anthropology
Anthropology can best be understood as an outgrowth of the Age of Enlightenment. It was during this period that Europeans attempted systematically to study human behaviour. Traditions of jurisprudence, history, philology and sociology developed during this time and informed the development of the social sciences of which anthropology was a part. At the same time, the romantic reaction to the Enlightenment produced thinkers such as Johann Gottfried Herder and later Wilhelm Dilthey whose work formed the basis for the culture concept which is central to the discipline. Traditionally, much of the history of the subject was based on colonial encounters between Europe and the rest of the world, and much of 18th- and 19th-century anthropology is now classed as forms of scientific racism. During the late 19th-century, battles over the "study of man" took place between those of an "anthropological" persuasion (relying on anthropometrical techniques) and those of an "ethnological" persuasion (looking at cultures and traditions), and these distinctions became part of the later divide between physical anthropology and cultural anthropology, the latter ushered in by the students of Franz Boas. In the mid-20th century, much of the methodologies of earlier anthropological and ethnographical study were reevaluated with an eye towards research ethics, while at the same time the scope of investigation has broadened far beyond the traditional study of "primitive cultures" (scientific practice itself is often an arena of anthropological study).
During the 20th century, a number of interdisciplinary scientific fields have emerged. Three examples will be given here:
Communication studies combines animal communication, information theory, marketing, public relations, telecommunications and other forms of communication.
Computer science, built upon a foundation of theoretical linguistics, discrete mathematics, and electrical engineering, studies the nature and limits of computation. Subfields include computability, computational complexity, database design, computer networking, artificial intelligence, and the design of computer hardware. Computer science provides much of the theoretical basis for software engineering.
Materials science has its roots in metallurgy, minerology, and crystallography. It combines chemistry, physics, and several engineering disciplines. The field studies metals, ceramics, plastics, semiconductors, and composite materials.
History of science and technology (academic field of study)
Philosophy and Logic
Epistemology (branch of philosophy concerning the nature, origin and scope of knowledge)
Military funding of science
Obsolete scientific theory
List of famous experiments
List of scientists
List of Nobel laureates
List of years in science
Philosophy of science
^ W. C. Dampier Wetham, Science, in Encyclopædia Brittanica, 11th ed. (New York: Encyclopedia Brittanica, Inc, 1911); M. Clagett, Greek Science in Antiquity (New York: Collier Books, 1955); D. Pingree, Hellenophilia versus the History of Science, Isis 83, 559 (1982).
^ William of Malmesbury, Gesta regum Anglorum / The history of the English kings, ed. and trans. R. A. B. Mynors, R. M. Thomson, and M. Winterbottom, 2 vols., Oxford Medieval Texts (1998–9)
^ Alpher, Herman, and Gamow. Nature 162,774 (1948).
^ Wilson's 1978 Nobel lecture
^ James D. Watson and Francis H. Crick. "Letters to Nature: Molecular structure of Nucleic Acid." Nature 171, 737–738 (1953).
Thomas S. Kuhn (1996). The Structure of Scientific Revolutions (3rd ed.). University of Chicago Press. ISBN 0226458075
Howard Margolis (2002). It Started with Copernicus. New York: McGraw-Hill. ISBN 0-07-138507-X
Joseph Needham. Science and Civilisation in China. Multiple volumes (1954–2004).
Bertrand Russell (1945). A History of Western Philosophy: And Its Connection with Political and Social Circumstances from the Earliest Times to the Present Day. New York: Simon and Schuster.
Leonard C. Bruno (1989), The Landmarks of Science. ISBN 0-8160-2137-6
John L. Heilbron, ed., The Oxford companion to the history of modern science (New York: Oxford University Press, 2003).
George Rousseau and Roy Porter, eds., The Ferment of Knowledge: Studies in the Historiography of Science (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1980). ISBN 0-52122599
Caroline L. Herzenberg. 1986. Women Scientists from Antiquity to the Present Locust Hill Press ISBN 0-933951-01-9