Sputnik: The Shock of the Century

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Bloomsbury Publishing, May 26, 2009 - History - 320 pages
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On October 4, 1957, as Leave It to Beaver premiered on American television, the Soviet Union launched the first man-made object into space-a 184-pound satellite carrying only a radio transmitter. While Sputnik I immediately shocked the world, its long-term impact was even greater, for it profoundly changed the shape of the twentieth century. Paul Dickson chronicles the dramatic events and developments leading up to and emanating from Sputnik's launch. Supported by groundbreaking original research and many recently declassified documents, Sputnik offers a fascinating profile of the early American and Soviet space programs and a strikingly revised picture of the politics and personalities-President Dwight D. Eisenhower, Wernher von Braun, and many others-behind the fašade of America's fledgling efforts to get into space. Sputnik directly or indirectly influenced nearly every aspect of American life, from the demise of the suddenly superfluous tailfin and an immediate shift toward science in the classroom to the arms race that defined the Cold War, the competition to reach the moon, and the birth of the Internet.

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User Review  - sgerbic - LibraryThing

Reviewed Jan. 2002 Mary got this book for Christmas from Mark and I kept trying to “borrow” it, but she remembered to take it home with her so I purchased this book on First Night 2002 at Bay Books ... Read full review

Sputnik: the shock of the century

User Review  - Not Available - Book Verdict

Space exploration is often portrayed as a U.S.-U.S.S.R. race, with the Soviet Union winning the initial lap by launching Sputnik, the earth's first artificial satellite. Yet as Dickson (The New ... Read full review

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About the author (2009)

Long fascinated by space and the Cold War, Paul Dickson is the coauthor (with Thomas B. Allen) of The Bonus Army and author of more than forty books on diverse topics, including two works of investigative journalism, Think Tanks and The Electronic Battlefield.

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