Science in the 20th Century and Beyond

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Polity, Apr 9, 2012 - History - 614 pages
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"A compelling history of science from 1900 to the present day, this is the first book to survey modern developments in science during a century of unprecedented change, conflict and uncertainty. The scope is global. Science's claim to access universal truths about the natural world made it an irresistible resource for industrial empires, ideological programs, and environmental campaigners during this period. Science has been at the heart of twentieth century history--from Einstein's new physics to the Manhattan Project, from eugenics to the Human Genome Project, or from the wonders of penicillin to the promises of biotechnology. For some science would only thrive if autonomous and kept separate from the political world, while for others science was the best guide to a planned and better future. Science was both a routine, if essential, part of an orderly society, and the disruptive source of bewildering transformation. Jon Agar draws on a wave of recent scholarship that explores science from interdisciplinary perspectives to offer a readable synthesis that will be ideal for anyone curious about the profound place of science in the modern world."--Publisher description.
  

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Contents

1 INTRODUCTION
1
Part I Science after 1900
13
2 NEW PHYSICS
15
3 NEW SCIENCES OF LIFE
44
4 NEW SCIENCES OF THE SELF
63
Part II Sciences in a World of Conflict
87
5 SCIENCE AND THE FIRST WORLD WAR
89
QUANTUM THEORIES AND OTHER WEIMAR SCIENCES
118
12 SCIENCE AND THE SECOND WORLD WAR
263
13 TRIALS OF SCIENCE IN THE ATOMIC AGE
301
14 COLD WAR SPACES
330
SCIENCES FROM THE WORKING WORLD OF ATOMIC PROJECTS
354
SCIENCES FROM INFORMATION SYSTEMS
367
Part IV Sciences of our World
401
SEA CHANGE IN THE LONG 1960s
403
18 NETWORKS
433

7 SCIENCE AND IMPERIAL ORDER
142
PRIVATE WEALTH AND AMERICAN SCIENCE
161
9 REVOLUTIONS AND MATERIALISM
186
10 NAZI SCIENCE
211
11 SCALING UP SCALING DOWN
229
Part III Second World War and Cold War
261
19 CONNECTING ENDS
466
Part V Conclusions
497
20 SCIENCE IN THE TWENTIETH CENTURY AND BEYOND
499
NOTES
531
INDEX
595
Copyright

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About the author (2012)

Jon Agar is Senior Lecturer in Science and Technology Studies at University College London and editor of the British Journal for the History of Science. His previous books include Constant Touch: A Global History of the Mobile Phone and The Government Machine: A Universal History of the Computer.

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