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Science in the Marketplace: Nineteenth-Century Sites and Experiences

Edited By: Aileen Fyfe and Bernard Lightman

432 pages, 54 halftones, 17 line drawings

University of Chicago Press

Hardback | Nov 2007 | #168326 | ISBN-13: 9780226276502
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NHBS Price: £31.50 $42/€36 approx

About this book

The nineteenth century was an age of transformation in science, when scientists were rewarded for their startling new discoveries with increased social status and authority. But it was also a time when ordinary people from across the social spectrum were given the opportunity to participate in science, for education, entertainment, or both. In Victorian Britain science could be encountered in myriad forms and in countless locations: in panoramic shows, exhibitions, and galleries; in city museums and country houses; in popular lectures; and even in domestic conversations that revolved around the latest books and periodicals.

Science in the Marketplace reveals this other side of Victorian scientific life by placing the sciences in the wider cultural marketplace, ultimately showing that the creation of new sites and audiences was just as crucial to the growing public interest in science as were the scientists themselves. By focusing attention on the scientific audience, as opposed to the scientific community or self-styled popularizers, Science in the Marketplace ably links larger societal changes-in literacy, in industrial technologies, and in leisure-to the evolution of "popular science."

Nineteenth-century England is well-trodden ground, but the editors and authors of this book have found an innovative and extremely interesting way to approach it. . . . And by publishing essays that shed light on these sites of scientific consumption, this book itself opens a wintow on the experience of science in the nineteenth century.--Laura J. Snyder "H-Net Review "

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Aileen Fyfe is lecturer in the Department of History at the National University of Ireland, Galway, and the author of Science and Salvation, also published by the University of Chicago Press. Bernard Lightman is professor of humanities at York University, Toronto, editor of Victorian Science in Context and Isis, and the author of Victorian Popularizers of Science, all published by the University of Chicago Press.

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