Cover image for Newton's apple and other myths about science
Newton's apple and other myths about science
Numbers, Ronald L., editor.
Publication Information:
Cambridge, Massachusetts : Harvard University Press, 2015.
Physical Description:
xiv, 287 pages : illustrations ; 22 cm
"Edited by Ronald Numbers and Kostas Kampourakis, Newton's Apple and Other Myths about Science debunks the widespread belief that science advances when individual geniuses experience 'Eureka!' moments and suddenly comprehend what those around them could never imagine. Science has always been a cooperative enterprise of dedicated, fallible human beings, for whom context, collaboration, and sheer good luck are the essential elements of discovery, "
I: MEDIEVAL AND EARLY MODERN SCIENCE. That there was no scientific activity between Greek antiquity and the scientific revolution / Michael H. Shank ; That before Columbus geographers and other educated people thought the earth was flat / Lesley B. Cormack ; That the copernican revolution demoted the status of the Earth / Michael N. Keas ; That alchemy and astrology were superstitious pursuits that did not contribute to science and scientific understanding / Lawrence M. Principe ; That Galileo publicly refuted Aristotle's conclusions about motion by repeated experiments made from the Campanile of Pisa / John L. Heilbron ; That the apple fell and Newton invented the law of gravity, thus removing God from the cosmos / Patricia Fara -- II: NINETEENTH CENTURY. That Friedrich Wohler's synthesis of urea in 1828 destroyed vitalism and gave rise to organic chemistry / Peter J. Ramberg ; That William Paley raised scientific questions about biological origins that were eventually answered by Charles Darwin / Adam R. Shapiro ; That nineteenth-century geologists were divided into opposing camps of Catastrophists and Uniformitarians / Julie Newell ; That Lamarckian evolution relied largely on use and disuse and that Darwin rejected Lamarckian mechanisms / Richard W. Burkhardt Jr ; That Darwin worked on his theory in secret for twenty years, his fears causing him to delay publication / Robert J. Richards ; That Wallace's and Darwin's explanations of evolution were virtually the same / Michael Ruse ; That Darwinian natural selection has been "the only game in town" / Nicolaas Rupke ; That after Darwin (1871), sexual selection was largely ignored until Robert Trivers (1972) resurrected the theory / Erika Lorraine Milam ; That Louis Pasteur disproved spontaneous generation on the basis of scientific objectivity / Garland E. Allen ; That Gregor Mendel was a lonely pioneer of genetics, being ahead of his time / Kostas Kampourakis ; That "social Darwinism" has had a profound influence on social thought and policy, especially in America / Ronald L. Numbers -- III: TWENTIETH CENTURY. That the Michelson-Morley experiment paved the way for the special theory of relativity / Theodore Arabatzis and Kostas Gavroglu ; That the Millikan oil-drop experiment was simple and straightforward / Mansoor Niaz ; That neo-Darwinism defines evolution as random mutation plus natural selection / David J. Depew ; That melanism in peppered moths is not a genuine example of evolution by ; Natural selection / David W. Rudge ; That Linus Pauling's discovery of the molecular basis of sickle-cell anemia revolutionized medical practice / Bruno J. Strasser ; That the Soviet launch of Sputnik caused the revamping of American science ; Education / John L. Rudolph -- IV: GENERALIZATIONS. That religion has typically impeded the progress of science / Peter Harrison ; That science has been largely a solitary enterprise / Kathryn M. Olesko ; That the "scientific method" accurately reflects what scientists actually do / Daniel P. Thurs ; That a clear line of demarcation has separated science from pseudoscience / Michael D. Gordin.
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