The genesis of science: the story of Greek imagination
Prometheus Books, Publishers
, 2010 - Science
- 293 pages
Historians often look to ancient Greece as the wellspring of Western civilization. Perhaps the most ingenious achievement of the Hellenic mind was the early development of the sciences. The names we give to science's many branches today---from physics and chemistry to mathematics, biology, and psychology---echo the Greek words that were first used to define these disciplines in ancient times and remain a testament to the groundbreaking discoveries of these pioneering thinkers.
What was it about the Greeks, as opposed to the far older civilizations of Egypt, Mesopotamia, India, and China, that gave rise to the uniquely Western scientific mind-set?
In The Genesis of Science, classics professor Stephen Bertman explores this intriguing question in an authoritative yet accessible and eloquently told story about the origins of science. Going beyond individual Greek discoveries in the various branches of science, Bertman emphasizes why these early investigators were able to achieve what they did.
Focusing on ten different branches of science, Bertman shows why the Greeks gravitated toward each specialty and explains the fascinating theories they developed, the brilliant experiments they performed, and the practical applications of their discoveries. He concludes by recounting how these early insights and achievements---transmitted over the course of two thousand years---have shaped the scientific attitude that is the hallmark of today's world.
Bertman's lively narrative captures the Greeks' genius and demonstrates the indelible influence of their discoveries on modern science and technology.