Author: Donald W. Olson
Publisher: Springer Science & Business Media
Release Date: 2013-10-02
For a general audience interested in solving mysteries in art, history, and literature using the methods of science, 'forensic astronomy' is a thrilling new field of exploration. Astronomical calculations are the basis of the studies, which have the advantage of bringing to readers both evocative images and a better understanding of the skies. Weather facts, volcano studies, topography, tides, historical letters and diaries, famous paintings, military records, and the friendly assistance of experts in related fields add variety, depth, and interest to the work. The chosen topics are selected for their wide public recognition and intrigue, involving artists such as Vincent van Gogh, Claude Monet, Edvard Munch, and Ansel Adams; historical events such as the Battle of Marathon, the death of Julius Caesar, the American Revolution, and World War II; and literary authors such as Chaucer, Shakespeare, Joyce, and Mary Shelley. This book sets out to answer these mysteries indicated with the means and expertise of astronomy, opening the door to a richer experience of human culture and its relationship with nature. Each subject is carefully analyzed. As an example using the study of sky paintings by Vincent van Gogh, the analytical method would include: - computer calculations of historical skies above France in the 19th century - finding and quoting the clues found in translations of original letters by Van Gogh - making site visits to France to determine the precise locations when Van Gogh set up his easel and what celestial objects are depicted. For each historical event influenced by astronomy, there would be a different kind of mystery to be solved. As an example: - How can the phase of the Moon and time of moonrise help to explain a turning point of the American Civil War - the fatal wounding of Stonewall Jackson at Chancellorsville in 1863? For each literary reference to astronomy, it was determined which celestial objects were being described and making an argument that the author is describing an actual event. For example, what was the date of the moonlit scene when Mary Shelley first had the idea for her novel “Frankenstein?” These and more fun riddles will enchant and delight the fan of art and astronomy.
Author: Donald W. Olson
Release Date: 2018-01-31
From the author of "Celestial Sleuth" (2014), yet more mysteries in art, history, and literature are solved by calculating phases of the Moon, determining the positions of the planets and stars, and identifying celestial objects in paintings. In addition to helping to crack difficult cases, these studies spark our imagination and provide a better understanding of the skies. Weather archives, vintage maps, tides, historical letters and diaries, military records and the assistance of experts in related fields help with this work. For each historical event influenced by astronomy, there is a different kind of mystery to be solved. How did the changing tides affect an army's battle plans? How did the phases of the moon affect how an artist painted a landscape? Follow these exciting investigations with a master “celestial sleuth” as he tracks down the truth and helps unravel mysteries as far back as the Middle Ages and as recent as the iconic 1945 photograph of a kiss in Times Square on VJ Day. Topics or "cases" pursued were chosen for their wide public recognition and intrigue and involve artists such as Vincent van Gogh and Claude Monet; historical events such as the campaigns of Braveheart in Scotland and battles in World War II and the Korean War; and literary authors such as Chaucer, Cervantes, Shakespeare, Byron, and Edgar Allan Poe.
Author: Nick Kanas
Publisher: Springer Science & Business Media
Release Date: 2013-09-25
In recent years, there has been increased interest in our Solar System. This has been prompted by the launching of giant orbiting telescopes and space probes, the discovery of new planetary moons and heavenly bodies that orbit the Sun, and the demotion of Pluto as a planet. In one generation, our place in the heavens has been challenged, but this is not unusual. Throughout history, there have been a number of such world views. Initially, Earth was seen as the center of the universe and surrounded by orbiting planets and stars. Then the Sun became the center of the cosmos. Finally, there was no center, just a vast array of galaxies with individual stars, some with their own retinue of planets. This allowed our Solar System to be differentiated from deep-sky objects, but it didn’t lose its mystery as more and more remarkable bodies were discovered within its boundaries. This book tells the exciting story of how we have conceptualized and mapped our Solar System from antiquity to modern times. In addition to the complete text, this story is made more vivid by: • 162 Solar System and planetary maps, diagrams, and images (over a third in color); • direct quotes and figures from antiquarian, contemporary, and Space Age documents and photographs that allow the reader to track how humans have viewed the Solar System from original sources; • nine tables that compare the various world views, relative planetary positions, and components of the Solar System with each other. Broad in scope and rich in imagery, this book will draw the reader into the story of our Solar System and how it has been mapped since the beginning of recorded time.
Author: Tyler Nordgren
Publisher: Springer Science & Business Media
Release Date: 2011-01-28
Stars Above, Earth Below uses photographs and sky charts to form a connection between what is seen on the ground and in the sky, and looks at the deeper scientific meaning behind these sights. Nordgren describes other objects in the Solar System with features similar to those on Earth and links the geological features seen in the national parks to the very latest NASA spacecraft discoveries on other planets and their moons. Additionally, historical context is discussed to show why we humans (who have lived in and around our national parts for tens of thousands of years) have always been astronomers. The first book to make direct connections between astronomy and the landscapes, processes and cultures one experiences in the US National Parks Each chapter ties a specific astronomical phenomenon to a particular National Park or type of park and concludes with a “See for yourself” section that shows you how to see the planets, stars, nebulae, moons, etc. that are described within that chapter A personal guide showing the reader the astronomical phenomena that you can see for yourself when visiting the U.S. National Parks
Author: Mary Street Alinder
Publisher: Bloomsbury Publishing USA
Release Date: 2014-11-04
Genre: Biography & Autobiography
First published in 1996, Mary Street Alinder's biography of Ansel Adams remains the only full biography of one of the greatest American photographers. Alinder is a respected scholar, and also had a close connection to Adams, serving as his chief assistant in the last five years of his life. The portrait she creates of him is intimate and affectionate; it is also clear-eyed. She takes on his difficult childhood in San Francisco, the friendships and rivalries within his circle of photographers, his leadership in America's environmental movement, his marriage, his affairs, and his not-always-successful fatherhood. Enriched by her uniquely personal understanding of Adams the man, she explains the artistic philosophy that, paired with his peerless technique, produced an inimitable style. Her biography is likely to remain unrivaled. This new edition will bring the classic up to date and includes research that reveals new information and a deeper understanding of his greatest photographs. It will also include thirty-two pages of reproductions of Adams's work and snapshots of the artist and close friends.
Author: Chris Gooddie
Publisher: Princeton University Press
Release Date: 2013-02-15
A tale of one man's obsession with rainforest jewels, this is the story of an impossible dream: a quest to see every one of the world's most elusive avian gems--a group of birds known as pittas--in a single year. Insightful, compelling, and laugh-out-loud funny, this is more than a book about birds. It's a true story detailing the lengths to which a man will go to escape his midlife crisis. A travelogue with a difference, it follows a journey from the suburban straitjacket of High Wycombe to the steamy, leech-infested rainforests of remotest Asia, Africa, and Australia. Dangerous situations, personal traumas, and logistical nightmares threaten The Jewel Hunter's progress. Will venomous snakes or razor-clawed bears intervene? Or will running out of fuel mid-Pacific ultimately sink the mission? The race is on. . . . If you've ever yearned to escape your day job, wondered what makes men tick, or simply puzzled over how to make a truly world-class cup of tea, this is a book for you.
Author: John Holmes
Publisher: Taylor & Francis
Release Date: 2017-05-18
Genre: Literary Criticism
Tracing the continuities and trends in the complex relationship between literature and science in the long nineteenth century, this companion provides scholars with a comprehensive, authoritative and up-to-date foundation for research in this field. In intellectual, material and social terms, the transformation undergone by Western culture over the period was unprecedented. Many of these changes were grounded in the growth of science. Yet science was not a cultural monolith then any more than it is now, and its development was shaped by competing world views. To cover the full range of literary engagements with science in the nineteenth century, this companion consists of twenty-seven chapters by experts in the field, which explore crucial social and intellectual contexts for the interactions between literature and science, how science affected different genres of writing, and the importance of individual scientific disciplines and concepts within literary culture. Each chapter has its own extensive bibliography. The volume as a whole is rounded out with a synoptic introduction by the editors and an afterword by the eminent historian of nineteenth-century science Bernard Lightman.
Author: Tullis C. Onstott
Publisher: Princeton University Press
Release Date: 2016-10-25
Deep Life takes readers to uncharted regions deep beneath Earth's crust in search of life in extreme environments and reveals how astonishing new discoveries by geomicrobiologists are helping the quest to find life in the solar system. Tullis Onstott, named one of the 100 most influential people in America by Time magazine, provides an insider’s look at the pioneering fieldwork that is shining vital new light on Earth’s hidden biology—a thriving subterranean biosphere that scientists once thought to be impossible. Come along on epic descents two miles underground into South African gold mines to experience the challenges that Onstott and his team had to overcome. Join them in their search for microbes in the ancient seabed below the desert floor in the American Southwest, and travel deep beneath the frozen wastelands of the Arctic tundra to discover life as it could exist on Mars. Blending cutting-edge science with thrilling scientific adventure, Deep Life features rare and unusual encounters with exotic life forms, including a bacterium living off radiation and a hermaphroditic troglodytic worm that has changed our understanding of how complex subsurface life can really be. This unforgettable book takes you to the absolute limits of life—the biotic fringe—where today’s scientists hope to discover the very origins of life itself.
Historical astronomical records can play an important role in modern research, especially in the case of ancient Chinese observational data: sunspot and aurora records are important for the study of solar variability; solar and lunar eclipse records for the study of the Earth's rotation; records of Comet Hally for the study of orbital evolution; "guest star" records for the study of supernova remnants; planetary conjunction records for research in astronomical chronology. In the past, Western scientists have not been able to exploit these valuable data fully because the original records were difficult to gather and interpret, and complete English translations have not been available. East-Asian Archaeoastronomy is the first comprehensive translation into English of such historical records for modern research. The book also features an introduction to East Asian astronomy and offers guidance on how to use the records effectively. It will not only be a valuable research tool for astronomers but should also be of great interest to historians of China and Chinese science.
Author: John S. Haller
Publisher: SIU Press
Release Date: 2000
Genre: Health & Fitness
Samuel Thomson, born in New Hampshire in 1769 to an illiterate farming family, had no formal education, but he learned the elements of botanical medicine from a "root doctor," who he met in his youth. Thomson sought to release patients from the harsh bleeding or purging regimens of regular physicians by offering inexpensive and gentle medicines from their own fields and gardens. He melded his followers into a militant corps of dedicated believers, using them to successfully lobby state legislatures to pass medical acts favorable to their cause. John S. Haller Jr. points out that Thomson began his studies by ministering to his own family. He started his professional career as an itinerant healer traveling a circuit among the small towns and villages of Maine, New Hampshire, and Massachusetts. Eventually, he transformed his medical practice into a successful business enterprise with agents selling several hundred thousand rights or franchises to his system. His popular New Guide to Health (1822) went through thirteen editions, including one in German, and countless thousands were reprinted without permission. Told here for the first time, Haller's history of Thomsonism recounts the division within this American medical sect in the last century. While many Thomsonians displayed a powerful, vested interest in anti-intellectualism, a growing number found respectability through the establishment of medical colleges and a certified profession of botanical doctors. The People's Doctors covers seventy years, from 1790, when Thomson began his practice on his own family, until 1860, when much of Thomson's medical domain had been captured by the more liberal Eclectics. Eighteen halftones illustrate this volume.
Author: Edmund Russell
Publisher: Cambridge University Press
Release Date: 2001-02-12
A social narrative documents the close ties between chemical weapons development and â€œpeacefulâ€ applications in insect warfare, discussing the role of chemists and chemistry in military history and the changing attitude of war departments toward chemists.
Digital Delirium is a manifest against the right-wing politics of cyberlibertarianism and for rewiring the question of ethics to digital reality. Bringing together the most creative minds of the digital generation, it explores what is lost and what is gained by being digital.
Author: Richard A. Rajala
Publisher: UBC Press
Release Date: 2011-11-01
This book integrates class, environmental, and political analysis to uncover the history of clearcutting in the Douglas fir forests of B.C., Washington, and Oregon between 1880 and 1965. Part I focuses on the mode of production, analyzing the technological and managerial structures of worker and resource exploitation from the perspective of current trends in labour process research. Rajala argues that operators sought to neutralize the variable forest environment by emulating the factory model of work organization. The introduction of steam-powered overhead logging methods provided industry with a rudimentary factory regime by 1930, accompanied by productivity gains and diminished workplace autonomy for loggers. After a Depression-inspired turn to selective logging with caterpillar tractors timber capital continued its refinement of clearcutting technologies in the post-war period, achieving complete mechanization of yarding with the automatic grapple. Driviing this process of innovation was a concept of industrial efficiency that responded to changing environmental conditions, product and labour markets, but sought to advance operators' class interests by routinizing production. The managerial component of the factory regime took shape in accordance with the principles of the early 20th century scientific management movement. Requiring expertise in the organization of an expanded, technologically sophisticated exploitation process, operators presided over the establishment of logging engineering programs in the region's universities. Graduates introduced rational planning procedures to coastal logging, contributing to a rate of deforestation that generated a corporate call for technical forestry expertise after 1930. Industrial foresters then emerged from the universities to provide firms with data needed for long-range investment decisions in land acquisition and management. Part II constitutes an environmental and political history of clearcutting. This reconstructs the process of scientific research concenring the factory regime's impact on the ecology of the Douglas fir forest, assessing how knowledge was utitized in the regulation of cutting practices. Analysis of business-government relations in British Columbia, Washington and Oregon suggests that the reliance of those client states on revenues generated by timber capital enouraged a pattern of regulation that served corporate rather than social and ecological ends.
Limiting Outer Space propels the historicization of outer space by focusing on the Post-Apollo period. After the moon landings, disillusionment set in. Outer space, no longer considered the inevitable destination of human expansion, lost much of its popular appeal, cultural significance and political urgency. With the rapid waning of the worldwide Apollo frenzy, the optimism of the Space Age gave way to an era of space fatigue and planetized limits. Bringing together the history of European astroculture and American-Soviet spaceflight with scholarship on the 1970s, this cutting-edge volume examines the reconfiguration of space imaginaries from a multiplicity of disciplinary perspectives. Rather than invoking oft-repeated narratives of Cold War rivalry and an escalating Space Race, Limiting Outer Space breaks new ground by exploring a hitherto underrated and understudied decade, the Post-Apollo period.