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Publisher's Summary

A groundbreaking examination of the greatest event in history, the Scientific Revolution, and how it came to change the way we understand ourselves and our world.

We live in a world transformed by scientific discovery. Yet today science and its practitioners have come under political attack. In this fascinating history spanning continents and centuries, historian David Wootton offers a lively defense of science, revealing why the Scientific Revolution was truly the greatest event in our history.

The Invention of Science goes back 500 years in time to chronicle this crucial transformation, exploring the factors that led to its birth and the people who made it happen. Wootton argues that the Scientific Revolution was actually five separate yet concurrent events that developed independently but came to intersect and create a new worldview. Here are the brilliant iconoclasts - Galileo, Copernicus, Brahe, Newton, and many more curious minds from across Europe - whose studies of the natural world challenged centuries of religious orthodoxy and ingrained superstition.

From gunpowder technology, the discovery of the new world, movable type printing, perspective painting, and the telescope to the practice of conducting experiments, the laws of nature, and the concept of the fact, Wootton shows how these discoveries codified into a social construct and a system of knowledge ideas of truth, knowledge, progress. Ultimately he makes clear the link between scientific discovery and the rise of industrialization - and the birth of the modern world we know.

©2015 David Wootton (P)2016 Blackstone Audio, Inc.

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  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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A detailed and persuasive set of arguments

Loved it. It assessed problems with both the history and philosophy of science, as promulgated by other modern scholars. Look for this richly detailed and covertly argued work to become a classic in the field.

The narration was flawless.

1 of 2 people found this review helpful

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    2 out of 5 stars
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A Good Read Spoiled

I read the printed book shortly after it was released on trade paperback and was excited to see it on Audible.com a few months ago and put it on my list. That was a big mistake. After hearing 'Aristotlian' incorrectly as if it were two names, Aristotle Ian, I was forced to abandon it because it kept spiking my BP to levels dangerous for a man of my age and health. That is not the only horrendous mispronounciation, either. The title of the paradigm shifting Principia of Isaac Newton was equally disturbing to me. Perhaps I am a tad too sensitive about such things but I had to quit listening so as to increase the chances of me living at least long enough to purchase a new title.

8 of 16 people found this review helpful

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Mind Numbing

Grindingly pedantic, clangingly anglocentric, a PhD thesis written to be read by history grad students. Wooten is proud to display a wide and shallow understanding of actual scientific principles. Then compensates by counting words in ancient manuscripts like Antonin Scalia on a meth bender.

2 of 10 people found this review helpful

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New Postmodern Historiography of History o Science

Highly recommended textbook on Historiography of Scientific Thinking & Dialogue with Posmodern Turn in History.

1 of 6 people found this review helpful

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Tedious, dryly academic

Would you try another book from David Wootton and/or James Langton?

I'd be very careful about trying another book from Wooton.

Has The Invention of Science turned you off from other books in this genre?

No, I'm happy to read other history books on science.

What character would you cut from The Invention of Science?

The author. He's there too much, lecturing us on every detail. I'd prefer to have the people making discoveries be the caracters.

Any additional comments?

This book may be useful for an academic who wants every detail drawn out in excruciating detail, but it's painfully slow for me.

1 of 8 people found this review helpful

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A boring argument about semantics

It's all about the definition of "modern scientific revolution." A very boring and pointless story mixed with science trivia

0 of 4 people found this review helpful