Lost Discoveries explores the mostly unheralded scientific breakthroughs from the ancient world - Babylonians, Egyptians, Indians, Africans, New World, and Oceanic tribes, among others, and from the non-European medieval world. By example, the Egyptians developed the concept of the lowest common denominator and the Indians developed the use of zero and negative numbers. The Chinese observed, reported, and dated eclipses between 1400 and 1200 B.C. The Chinese also set the stage for later Hindu scholars, who refined the concept of particles and the void. Five thousand years ago, Sumerians were able to assert that the earth was circular. Islamic scientists fixed problems in Ptolemy's geocentric cosmology. The Quechuan Indians of Peru were the first to vulcanize rubber.
This first comprehensive, authoritative, popularly written, multicultural history of science fills in a crucial gap in the history of science.
Lost Discoveries is also available in print from Simon and Schuster.
Executive Producer: Orli Moscowitz
Producer: David Rapkin
Adapted for audio.
©2002 by Dick Teresi
(P)2002 Random House, Inc.
"If you think that modern science is rooted in the golden age of Greece, you owe it to yourself to [hear this] book." (Library Journal)
"A reliable and fascinating guide to the unexplored field of multicultural science." (Amazon.com)
Yes. The book is a great piece of scientific history which turns many popular misconceptions of scientific history on their heads.
The Peter Johnston has a great voice reminiscent of Carl Sagan. He kept me interested the whole way through and conveyed the text very clearly.
I haven't heard any of Mr. Johnston's other performances, but I hope to hear more in the future.
Yes. It was too interesting to stop listening to.
I would recommend this book to anyone interested in anthropology, history, or the sciences.
I liked the history of ancient discoveries by non-Western cultures. The problem that I had was the author's constant reference back to what Western civilization had not done. One must keep in mind that yes, indeed, Western science was a "late bloomer," but in keeping with trend of the author, don't Western science since Newton blow every other culture out of the water?
I don't know if it was the narration or the book itself, but after mamking some initially interesting points the book began to simple drone on and on about things I really didn't care about. Either the story bored the narrator or it was just plain boring. Either was I stopped listening about half way through.
I suppose it should be said that I'v read everything available on ancient histories. Having said that, the narrator seems to just recite lots of facts here, without much enthusiasm. If you know almost nothing about the ancients, you may enjoy this more. I found no substantial errors in the reading---it just jumps around from place to place a lot, giving you a little knowledge about many things.
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Amazing insight to the missing pieces of the puzzle; fills the vacuum left by European scholarship.
Dick Teresi loses all credibility very early in this poorly titled waste of time and money. The publisher's "review" does a grave disservice to the former Librarian of Congress Daniel Boorstin by comparing this schlock to his oeuvre. Be forewarned! This is not a celebration of the multicultural contributions to modern Western science and math to our modern understanding. It is yet another attempt to dismiss modernity in favor of mythology and spirituality. Sadly, Teresi demonstrates his poor grasp of his subject matter at every step. His attempt to flex his (sorely small and flaccid) intellect with an obviously invented anecdote which is based on his attempt to get a mathematician at a predominant technical university to "admit that zero is a Counting Number. I don't believe that there are any teachers of even Junior High math that don't know that zero is most assuredly NOT a Counting Number, despite Teresi's attempt to categorize it as such. And that is just one example from this jarring piece of Cognitive Dissonance.
I enjoyed listening to is for the most part. There were some parts that were dry, but overall it was fine.
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