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Martínez, Alberto A
Science secrets : the truth about Darwin's finches, Einstein's wife, and other myths / Alberto A. Martínez
Pittsburgh, Pa. : University of Pittsburgh Press, c2011
book jacket
Location Call Number Status
 4th Floor  Q173 .M316 2011    AVAILABLE
Subject(s) Science -- History -- Miscellanea
Physical Description xviii, 324 p. : ill. ; 25 cm
Note Includes bibliographical references and index
Summary "Was Darwin really inspired by Galapagos finches? Did Einstein's wife secretly contribute to his theories? Did Franklin fly a kite in a thunderstorm? Did a falling apple lead Newton to universal gravity? Did Galileo drop objects from the Leaning Tower of Pisa? Did Einstein really believe in God? Science Secrets answers these questions and many others. It is a unique study of how myths evolve in the history of science. Some tales are partly true, others are mostly false, yet all illuminate the tension between the need to fairly describe the past and the natural desire to fill in the blanks. Energetically narrated, Science Secrets pits famous myths against extensive research from primary sources in order to accurately portray important episodes in the sciences. Alberto A. Martinez analyzes how such myths grow and rescues neglected facts that are more captivating than famous fictions. Moreover, he shows why opinions that were once secret and seemingly impossible are now scientifically compelling. The book includes new findings related to the Copernican revolution, alchemy, Pythagoras, young Einstein, and other events and figures in the history of science."-- Provided by publisher
"Accessibly written in an engaging style, this book examines classic popular stories in the history of science. Some of the myths discussed include Franklin's Kite, Newton's Apple, and Thomson's plum pudding model of the atom. Mart̕nez successfully holds readers' attention by relying on rich documentation from primary sources to debunk speculations that have become reified over time. He argues that although scientists have disagreed with one another, the disagreements have been productive. Features includes extensive primary source documentation and detailed explanations of how to compare contradictory sources in order to determine which accounts are truly valid."-- Provided by publisher
Contents List of myths and apparent myths -- Galileo and the leaning Tower of Pisa -- Galileo's pythagorean heresy -- Newton's apple and the tree of knowledge -- The stone of the ancients -- Darwin's missing frogs -- Ben Franklin's electric kite -- Coulomb's impossible experiment? -- Thomson, plum-pudding, and electrons -- Did Einstein believe in God? -- A myth about the speed of light -- The cult of the quiet wife -- Einstein and the clock towers of Bern -- The secret of Einstein's creativity? -- Eugenics and the myth of equality
NOTE 534757

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