Fact and Fiction in the History of Scientific Discovery
By (author) John Waller
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Fabulous Science by John Waller
Book DescriptionThe great biologist Louis Pasteur suppressed 'awkward' data because it didn't support the case he was making. John Snow, the 'first epidemiologist' was doing nothing others had not done before. Gregor Mendel, the supposed 'founder of genetics' never grasped the fundamental principles of 'Mendelian' genetics. Joseph Lister's famously clean hospital wards were actually notorious dirty. And Einstein's general relativity was only 'confirmed' in 1919 because an eminent British scientist cooked his figures. These are just some of the revelations explored in this book. Drawing on current history of science scholarship, Fabulous Science shows that many of our greatest heroes of science were less than honest about their experimental data and not above using friends in high places to help get their ideas accepted. It also reveals that the alleged revolutionaries of the history of science were often nothing of the sort. Prodigiously able they may have been, but the epithet of the 'man before his time' usually obscures vital contributions made their unsung contemporaries and the intrinsic merits of ideas they overturned. These distortions of the historical record mostly arise from our tendency to read the present back into the past. But in many cases, scientists owe their immortality to a combination of astonishing effrontery and their skills as self-promoters.
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Book DetailsISBN: 9780198609391
(197mm x 129mm x 17mm)
Imprint: Oxford University Press
Publisher: Oxford University Press
Publish Date: 25-Mar-2004
Country of Publication: United Kingdom
Books By Author John Waller
Hitchhiking to India in 1962, Paperback (March 2016)
Two Cambridge students hitchhike to India in 1962. Andrew writes a diary. They visit Yugoslavia, Greece and Turkey. In Iran John faces a mob after the CIA coup. In Amritsar there is anger over the partition. In Delhi they have tea with Indira Gandhi. John now returns to India, Yugoslavia with its refugee crisis and Greece in economic collapse.
Atlantic Affair, Paperback (September 2013)
In 1930, Irish yachtsman Otway Waller invents the 'running sails' which enables his 26ft yawl to self-steer for days before the wind in his epic single-handed Atlantic voyage. He recalls his courtship to an Englishwoman and returns to face a divorce, the split in his family and community, the torching of his house and being forced out of Ireland.
Time to Dance, a Time to Die, Paperback (May 2009)» View all books by John Waller
In July 1518 a plague struck the medieval city of Strasbourg. Hundreds of men and women danced wildly, day after day, in the punishing summer heat. They did not want to dance, but could not stop. This title offers an account of the events of 1518 and explains why Strasbourg's dancing plague took place.
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Author Biography - John Waller
John C. Waller was born in England in 1972. He gained a 'double first' in Modern History at the University of Oxford and went on to take Masters degrees in Human Biology and the History of Science and Medicine. He completed his Ph.D. in the History and Philosophy of Science at University College London in 2001. He is now a Lecturer in the History of Medicine at the University of Melbourne, Australia.
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