1st Edition

Chemists and Chemistry in Nature and Society, 1770–1878

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ISBN 9780860784128
Published April 28, 1994 by Routledge
320 Pages

USD $140.00

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Book Description

In the 18th century chemistry established itself as both an autonomous and a public science, moving from mining and medicine into agriculture and geology, indeed into the entire material and cultural fabric of society. This chemical revolution had its epicentre in France, but quickly spread. The present volume looks at theoretical and practical aspects of that revolution in France and The Netherlands, then turns to Britain, where Thomas Beddoes mixed French chemistry, medicine, and democratic politics. With the 19th century, Humphrey Davy, emerging from Beddoes’s Pneumatic Institution (from which he rapidly distanced himself), took public chemistry dramatically to London. The following articles show how his friend Coleridge incorporated the science into a romantic philosophy of nature, and Faraday extended Davy’s work in electrochemistry, matter theory, and a theology of nature; even Hegel’s philosophy of geology based itself on chemistry. The final section explores debates about chemical affinity, qualities and arrangement. Au 18é s., la chimie s’établissait en tant que science autonome et publique, passant de l’industrie minière et de la médecine à l’agriculture et à la géologie; en vérité, à l’ensemble de la structure matérielle et culturelle de la société. Cette révolution chimique, dont l’épicentre était en France, finit par s’étaler rapidement de toute part. Le présent volume examine les aspects théoriques et pratiques de cette révolution en France et aux Pays-Bas, puis se tourne vers la Grande-Bretagne, où Thomas Beddoes mélangeait la chimie française à la médecine et à la politique démocratique. A l’orée du 19è s., Humphry Davy, émergeant de l’Institut Pneumatique de Beddoes (dont il se distancera rapidement), amena le chimie publique à Londres de façon théâtrale. Les articles suivants montrent commont son ami, Coleridge, incorpora la science à une philosophie romantique de la nature, et com

Table of Contents

Contents: Preface; Martinus van Marum (1750-1837): the introduction of Lavoisier’s chemistry into the Low Countries; Friendship and influence: Martinus van Marum, F.R.S.; Relations and rivalry: interactions between Britain and The Netherlands in 18th-century science and technology; Balance and gasometer in Lavoisier’s chemical revolution; Dr Thomas Beddoes at Oxford: radical politics in 1788-1793 and the fate of the Regius chair in chemistry; Dr Thomas Beddoes (1750-1808): science and medicine in politics and society; Dr Thomas Beddoes and the establishment of his Pneumatic Institution: a tale of three presidents; Dr Thomas Beddoes: the interaction of pneumatic and preventive medicine with chemistry; The rich economy of nature: chemistry in the 19th century; Elements in the structure of Victorian science, or Cannon revisited; Humphry Davy and the idea of glory; S.T. Coleridge: a poet’s view of science; Coleridge, chemistry and the philosophy of nature; Hegel and the earth sciences; Faraday, electrochemistry, and natural philosophy; Faraday, matter, and natural theology: reflections on an unpublished manuscript; Affinity or structure: an early problem in organic chemistry; Gay-Lussac and the problem of chemical qualities; Arrangement and structure: a distinction and a difference; Index.

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