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The Discoverers: A History of Man's Search to Know His World and Himself | [Daniel J. Boorstin]

The Discoverers: A History of Man's Search to Know His World and Himself

Why didn't the Chinese discover America? Why were people so slow to learn the earth goes around the sun? How and why did we begin to think of "species" of plants and animals? How, when, and why did people begin digging in the earth to learn about the past? How did the study of economics begin? These are but a few of the fascinating questions answered by Dr. Boorstin, Librarian of Congress Emeritus.
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Publisher's Summary

The Discoverers is a vivid, sweeping and original history of man's greatest adventure: his search to discover the world around him - the relationship of the heavens to his own planet, the elusive and mysterious dimension of time, the vast and colorful range of plants and animals, the intricate workings of his own body, the surprising variety of human societies past and present. Boorstin's flair for the vivid anecdote, for fresh points of view, and for the dramatic relationship of ideas has made him the most readable of our eminent historians.

The story of our world is not the usual succession of battles and empires and political leaders, but a tale of discoveries and beginnings. The long human quest for what man does not yet know becomes a mystery story played by a vast cast on an ever-changing stage. The heroes of this saga are men with an insatiable hunger for knowledge and the courage to venture into the unknown.

Why didn't the Chinese discover America? Why were people so slow to learn the earth goes around the sun? How and why did we begin to think of "species" of plants and animals? How, when, and why did people begin digging in the earth to learn about the past? How did the study of economics begin? These are but a few of the fascinating questions answered by Dr. Boorstin, Librarian of Congress Emeritus.

©1983 Daniel J. Boorstin; (P)1994 The Publishing Mills

What the Critics Say

"A remarkable narrative of the grand intellectual venture of humankind, rich in fascinating, often dramatic details." (The Wall Street Journal)
"A sumptuous, totally engaging panorama. No one...will look at the chronicle of human ingenuity in the same way again." (David McCullough, author of John Adams)

What Members Say

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    shannonnn ma 05-09-05
    shannonnn ma 05-09-05
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    "One of my Top 10 Fav. Books!"

    Having little interest in reading history books, it was by chance I came across this book. "The Discoverers" opened my eyes to the wonders of history and discovery. This book tells the tales of mystery, discovery and invention. The first chapter alone had me fully engrossed. The history of time and it's measurement. Planting seasons, politics, religion and whim led to thousands of different calenders. Once the measurements we know today were increasingly agreed upon the next challenge to overcome was how to measure time by day. Hourglasses were useless of a listing boat and so the contest was on to see who could invent a device for measuring time when at sea.

    I lent this book out to everyone I know. My family, friends and coworkers all loved it. My 14 yr old cousin told me he thinks the book is "cool and awesom." I have kept a copy of "The Discoverers" in my car for a few years now and I never get tired of listening to it.

    If you loved Bill Bryson's "A Brief History of Nearly Everything" then you will really enjoy "The Discoverers"

    If you loved "The Discoverers" then you will really enjoy Bill Bryson's "A Brief History of Nearly Everything"

    14 of 14 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Steven Petersen Portland, OR United States 06-07-05
    Steven Petersen Portland, OR United States 06-07-05 Member Since 2005
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    "Interesting book - poor audio quality"

    The main reason for only 3 stars is that the recording is poor. The narrator sounds like he's speaking through a tube. But the content is interesting, if you have any interest in the history of science and exploration.

    9 of 9 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Yehoshua Bet El, Israel 07-23-12
    Yehoshua Bet El, Israel 07-23-12 Member Since 2010
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    "So Glad I Discovered This Book!"
    Would you listen to The Discoverers again? Why?

    I have found this book fascinating and will no doubt read it again. I really wish they would come out with an unabridged version.


    What other book might you compare The Discoverers to and why?

    I think that those who enjoy this book would also enjoy the History of Science (Peter Whitfield), or vice versa.


    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Eric elizabethtown, PA, USA 11-30-08
    Eric elizabethtown, PA, USA 11-30-08
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    "Terrible audio"

    This audiobook was the worst I have downloaded from audible. The biggest reason for that is the terrible quality of the recording. It's simply awful. I am seriously considering whether I should continue my membership because I expect more in the recordings.

    As for the book itself, the content is quite interesting at times. Yet I found some of the organization to be odd -- quick jumps from topic to topic at times. It's hard to tell if that was a function of the abridged version or the original work.

    Finally, while some portions were excellent, there were others that simply left too many questions when moving on... and others that droned on and on, long after the point had been made.

    3 of 4 people found this review helpful
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