The Ascent of Science

Paperback | March 15, 2000

byBrian L. Silver

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From the revolutionary discoveries of Galileo and Newton to the mind-bending theories of Einstein and Heisenberg, from plate tectonics to particle physics, from the origin of life to universal entropy, and from biology to cosmology, here is a sweeping, readable, and dynamic account of thewhole of Western science.In the approachable manner and method of Stephen Jay Gould and Carl Sagan, the late Brian L. Silver translates our most important, and often most obscure, scientific developments into a vernacular that is not only accessible and illuminating but also enjoyable. Silver makes his comprehensive casewith much clarity and insight; his book aptly locates science as the apex of human reason, and reason as our best path to the truth. For all readers curious about--or else perhaps intimidated by--what Silver calls "the scientific campaign up to now" in his Preface, The Ascent of Science will befresh, vivid, and fascinating reading.

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From Our Editors

The effect science has had on society over the years is mind-boggling. From Galileo and Newton to Einstein, our society owes a great deal to the work of these scientists. In The Ascent of Science, Brian L. Silver presents an overview of Western science, from the origin of life to biology and cosmology. The guide includes the theories o...

From the Publisher

From the revolutionary discoveries of Galileo and Newton to the mind-bending theories of Einstein and Heisenberg, from plate tectonics to particle physics, from the origin of life to universal entropy, and from biology to cosmology, here is a sweeping, readable, and dynamic account of thewhole of Western science.In the approachable man...

Brian L. Silver was Professor of Physical Chemistry at the Techion, or Institute of Technology, in Israel. He died in 1997, just prior to the publication of this book.

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Format:PaperbackDimensions:552 pages, 9.69 × 6.69 × 1.5 inPublished:March 15, 2000Publisher:Oxford University PressLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0195134273

ISBN - 13:9780195134278

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Table of Contents

AcknowledgmentsPrefaceIntroduction1. Newton Gets It Completely Wrong2. I Believe3. Thomas Aquinas versus Neil Armstrong4. The Second Law5. Predicting Catastrophe6. From Newton to De Sade: The partial Triumph of Reason7. From Rousseau to Blake: The Revolt against Reason8. Lodestone, Amber, and Lightning9. Belief and Action10. The Demise of Alchemy11. The Nineteenth Century12. The Material Trinity: The Atom13. The Stuff of Existence14. Scipio's Dream15. Making Waves16. The Ubiquity of Motion17. Energy18. Entropy: Intimations of Mortality19. Chaos20. The Slow Birth of Biology21. In a Monastery Garden22. Evolution23. The Descent of Man24. The Gene Machine25. The Lords of Nature?26. Life: The Molecular Battle27. The Origin of Life? Take Your Choice28. The Inexplicable Quantum29. New Ways of Thinking30. The Land of Paradox31. The Elementary Particles32. Relativity33. Cosmology34. The Cosmos and Peeping Tom35. The Impossibility of Creation36. The Tree of Death37. "What the Devil Does It All Mean?"38. The FutureAnnotated BibliographyIndex

From Our Editors

The effect science has had on society over the years is mind-boggling. From Galileo and Newton to Einstein, our society owes a great deal to the work of these scientists. In The Ascent of Science, Brian L. Silver presents an overview of Western science, from the origin of life to biology and cosmology. The guide includes the theories of important scientists and its impact on society. It is a great teaching guide for science teachers at all levels and for students with an interest in the history of science. 

Editorial Reviews

"Silver shows the intellectual and philosophical underpinnings of the scientist's quest for knowledge. His writing style is nothing less than charming."--Ben Bova,Courant