Cover image for The history of science in the United States : an encyclopedia
The history of science in the United States : an encyclopedia
Rothenberg, Marc, 1949-
Publication Information:
New York : Garland, 2001.
Physical Description:
xx, 615 pages ; 29 cm
Reading Level:
1360 Lexile.
Format :


Call Number
Material Type
Home Location
Item Holds
Q127.U6 H57 2001 Adult Non-Fiction Central Closed Stacks-Oversize

On Order



This Encyclopedia examines all aspects of the history of science in the United States, with a special emphasis placed on the historiography of science in America. It can be used by students, general readers, scientists, or anyone interested in the facts relating to the development of science in the United States. Special emphasis is placed in the history of medicine and technology and on the relationship between science and technology and science and medicine.

Author Notes

Marc Rothenberg received his Ph.D. from Bryn Mawr College's Program in the History and Philosophy of Science in 1974. He has been on the staff of the Joseph henry papers Project (Smithsonian Institution Press) since 1975 and was named Editor in 1985. He is the general editor of the Garland series of encyclopedias in the history of science. Rothenberg is the author of numerous books including the two-volume History of Science and Technology in the United States: A Critical and Selective Bibliography (Garland, 1993). He has also authored and co-authored numerous articles in scholarly journals.

Reviews 2

Library Journal Review

This single-volume encyclopedia comprises 500 short- to medium-length articles, all written by experts in the field, on the development of science and medicine in the United States. The typical article runs a page, though broad topics (e.g., major branches of science, interdisciplinary subjects) receive longer treatments. Short bibliographies accompany each article, and cross references, though present, are sparse. The alphabetical arrangement serves well in most cases, though less concrete entries, such as "Science in the U.S. from 1789 to 1865," aren't found very intuitively. Neither the introductory essay on the historiography of science since World War II nor the index (a necessity!) was seen by this reviewer. Rothenberg, of the Smithsonian Institution, is well prepared to edit this work (and his other Garland history of science encyclopedias), as he also authored the two-volume History of Science & Technology in the United States: A Critical and Selective Bibliography. No other encyclopedic works with this focus are available, recommending this for academic libraries and large reference collections in public libraries.√ĄWade M. Lee, Univ. of Toledo Libs., OH (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

Choice Review

Rothenberg's subject encyclopedia covers the physical and biological sciences, with lesser coverage of technology and medicine. The alphabetically arranged entries include about 200 nonbiographical articles devoted to fields of study, academic institutions, or government agencies. The choice is singular, omitting among others Xerox, the University of California, Johns Hopkins, and even MIT. There are also about 200 erratically selected biographical articles, which exclude living individuals. There are no illustrations, not even portraits, and no list of articles, but there is an adequate index. Each article has several well-chosen bibliographic references. The book is explicitly intended for nonspecialists, and the level of the biographical articles requires (and will impart) no knowledge of science whatever. The justification for any national history of science lies in integration with the economic, social, and political history of the country. That aspect of this book is exce ptionally naive, especially in the laudatory coverage of government agencies, with embarrassing topics such as germ warfare not even mentioned. An earlier work in this series, Encyclopedia of the Scientific Revolution: From Copernicus to Newton, ed. by Wilbur Applebaum (CH, Nov'00), was pitched at a distinctly higher academic level. For general readers and beginning undergraduates only; not otherwise recommended for academic libraries. D. Goodman Princeton University

Table of Contents

Series Introductionp. ix
Introductionp. xi
Ap. 1
Bp. 67
Cp. 101
Dp. 149
Ep. 167
Fp. 203
Gp. 221
Hp. 249
Ip. 277
Jp. 287
Kp. 297
Lp. 305
Mp. 329
Np. 367
Op. 407
Pp. 421
Qp. 463
Rp. 465
Sp. 487
Tp. 551
Up. 563
Wp. 565
Yp. 589
Zp. 593
Indexp. 595