The Fire within the Eye: A Historical Essay on the Nature and Meaning of Light

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9780691043326: The Fire within the Eye: A Historical Essay on the Nature and Meaning of Light
Review:

One of Choice's Outstanding Academic Titles for 1998

A New York Times "Notable Book of the Year," 1997

One of Choice's Outstanding Academic Books of 1998

"Park's essay requires serious attention from readers, but the effort is worth it. This substantial, well-written book is strongly recommended. . . . "-- Library Journal

"[A] panoramic study of our understanding of light. The historical sweep of Park's examination is vast; his cast of characters ranges from pre-Socratics through the medieval scientists to the giants of modern physics. . . a fine work of science. . . . "-- Publishers Weekly

"Park belongs to that golden academic period when teachers were sufficiently modern to tell you that understanding the problem was more important than getting the answer, but also sufficiently old-fashioned to believe that their chief business was to reconstruct, not deconstruct, the world. . . . Like a refracted beam, his story keeps shining its attention upon overlooked patches of ground. The result is almost a history of science itself."-- Thomas Mallon, New Yorker

"It is good to hear from a physical scientist steeped in history and philosophy who knows that the latest scientific knowledge is not the only truth that has accrued around light. . . . Park is an excellent guide. . . . [He] narrates this long and complex story with transparent prose. Such writing gives a sense of careful thinking behind the clear writing. . . . In fact, the book combines the scholarly with the approachable."-- Sidney Perkowitz, Los Angeles Times Book Review

"[A] graceful book. . . . In the first sentence he walks out of the dark night into his lighted house. In the final sentence he returns to the shadows, and we find ourselves still in darkness, but somehow illuminated by the experience. . . . Perhaps someday another experimenter will emerge from the shadows of the lab to explain the light. Until that day arrives. . . [N]o one can hold a candle to David Park."-- Dick Teresi, The New York Times Book Review

"In plain words, what is actually light? This is the story of how scientists have tried to answer this question. It is a fascinating account, brilliantly told, full of digressions that are useful because they help us to enter the intellectual and social climate where ideas about light were born."-- William Shea, Nature

"The book is dotted with. . . tidbits, and laced with capsule histories of the personalities who contributed to the puzzle of light. Nor is The Fire Within the Eye just a catalogue of shifting theories of light. It is also a history of how inquiry in natural philosophy itself changed. . . ."-- Christopher Dornan, The Globe and Mail

"Park means to take you all the way back to the switch-throwing in Genesis 1:3 and to explain how, throughout history, man misapprehended the way he saw the world through his own eyes.... Like a refracted beam, his story keeps shining its attention upon overlooked patches of ground. The result is almost a history of science itself."-- Thomas Mallon, The New Yorker

"Perhaps someday another experimenter will emerge from the shadows of the lab to explain the light. Until that day arrives, no one can hold a candle to David Park."-- Dick Teresi, The New York Times Book Review

"A challenging and fascinating experience.... I just recommend getting a copy of the book and giving yourself the pleasure of reading it."-- A. P. French, American Journal of Physics

" The Fire within the Eye is easily described. It is science writing at its best.... A superb performance."-- New Scientist

Review:

""The Fire within the Eye" is easily described. It is science writing at its best.... A superb performance."--"New Scientist"

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Park, David
ISBN 10: 0691043329 ISBN 13: 9780691043326
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