Arthur Koestler's extraordinary history of humanity's changing vision of the universe In this masterly synthesis, Arthur Koestler cuts through the sterile distinction between 'sciences' and 'humanities' to bring to life the whole history of cosmology from the Babylonians to Newton. He shows how the tragic split between science and religion arose and how, in particular, the modern world-view replaced the medieval world-view in the scientific revolution of the seventeenth century. He also provides vivid and judicious pen-portraits of a string of great scientists and makes clear the role that political bias and unconscious prejudice played in their creativity.
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Arthur Koestler (1905-1983) was an extraordinary polymath, writer and political polemicist. His most famous works include the novels Darkness at Noon and Arrival and Departure, his autobiographical writings, including Spanish Testament and Scum of the Earth, and his visionary non-fiction, including The Ghost in the Machine, The Case of the Midwife Toad and The Sleepwalkers. John Gray has been Professor of Politics at Oxford University, Visiting Professor at Harvard and Yale and Professor of European Thought at the London School of Economics. He now writes full time. His books include False Dawn: The Delusions of Global Capitalism, Straw Dogs: Thoughts on Humans and Other Animals, The Immortalization Commission: The Strange Quest to Cheat Death and, most recently, a sequel to Straw Dogs, The Silence of Animals: On Progress and Other Modern Myths. His selected writings, Gray's Anatomy, was published in 2009.Review:
The Sleepwalkers is a valuable and provocative book . . . a work with a noble aim * Sunday Times * The greatest part of this massive work is a close and valuable study of Copernicus, Tycho Brahe, Kepler, and Galileo . . . He writes tensely, with passion, as though personally involved, about events that took place more than 300 years ago * The Times *
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