Synopses & Reviews
James Gleick has long been fascinated by the making of sciencehow ideas order visible appearances, how equations can give meaning to molecular and stellar phenomena, how theories can transform what we see. In Chaos, he chronicled the emergence of a new way of looking at dynamic systems; in Genius, he portrayed the wondrous dimensions of Richard Feynmans mind. Now, in Isaac Newton
, he gives us the story of the scientist who, above all others, embodied humanitys quest to unveil the hidden forces that constitute the physical world.
In this original, sweeping, and intimate biography, Gleick moves between a comprehensive historical portrait and a dramatic focus on Newtons significant letters and unpublished notebooks to illuminate the real importance of his work in physics, in optics, and in calculus. He makes us see the old intuitive, alchemical universe out of which Newtons mathematics first arose and shows us how Newtons ideas have altered all forms of understanding from history to philosophy. And he gives us a moving account of the conflicting impulses that pulled at this mans heart: his quiet longings, his rage, his secrecy, the extraordinary subtleties of a personality that were mirrored in the invisible forces he first identified as the building blocks of science. More than biography, more than history, more than science, Isaac Newton tells us how, through the mind of one man, we have come to know our place in the cosmos.
From one of our foremost science writers comes a portrait of the scientific mind that glimpsed more of the truth than perhaps any other and that first articulated the essence of what we know. of illustrations.
Includes bibliographical references (p. 193-258) and index.
About the Author
James Gleick is an author, reporter, and essayist. His writing on science and technology–including Chaos
, and What Just Happened
–has been translated into thirty languages. He lives in New York.
From the Trade Paperback edition.
Table of Contents
1.What imployment is he fit for --2.Some philosophical questions --3.To resolve problems by motion --4.Two great orbs --5.Bodys & senses --6. Theoddest if not the most considerable detection --7.Reluctancy and rection -8.In the midst of a whirlwind --9.All things are corruptible --10.Heresy, blasphemy, idolatry --11.First principles --12.Every body perseveres --13.Is he like other men --14.No man is a witness in his own cause --15. Themarble index of a mind.