- Title Pages
- Chapter 1 Introduction
- Chapter 2 Does Science Studies Undermine Science? Wittgenstein, Turing, and Polanyi as Precursors for Science Studies and the Science Wars
- Chapter 3 Science and Sociology of Science: Beyond War and Peace
- Chapter 4 Is a Science Peace Process Necessary?
- Chapter 5 Caught in the Crossfire? The Public's Role in the Science Wars
- Chapter 6 Life Inside a Case Study
- Chapter 7 Conversing Seriously with Sociologists
- Chapter 8 How to be Antiscientific
- Chapter 9 Physics and History
- Chapter 10 Science Studies as Epistemography Peter Dear
- Chapter 11 From Social Construction to Questions for Research: The Promise of the Sociology of Science
- Chapter 12 A Martian Sends a Postcard Home
- Chapter 13 Awakening a Sleeping Giant?
- Chapter 14 Remarks on Methodological Relativism and “Antiscience”
- Chapter 15 One More Round with Relativism
- Chapter 16 Overdetermination and Contingency
- Chapter 17 Reclaiming Responsibility
- Chapter 18 Split Personalities, or The Science Wars Within
- Chapter 19 Situated Knowledge and Common Enemies: Therapy for the Science Wars
- Chapter 20 Real Essences and Human Experience
- Chapter 21 It's a Conversation
- Chapter 22 Confessions of a Believer
- Chapter 23 Barbarians at Which Gates?
- Chapter 24 Peace at Last?
- Chapter 25 Reply to Our Critics
- Chapter 26 Crown Jewels and Rough Diamonds: The Source of Science's Authority
- Chapter 27 Another Visit to Epistemography
- Chapter 28 Let's not Get too Agreeable
- Chapter 29 Causality, Grammar, and Working Philosophies: Some Final Comments
- Chapter 30 Readings and Misreadings
- Chapter 31 Peace for Whom and on Whose Terms?
- Chapter 32 Pilgrims' Progress
- Chapter 33 Historiographical Uses of Scientific Knowledge
- Chapter 34 Beyond Social Construction
- Chapter 35 Conclusion
- References References
Physics and History
Physics and History
- (p.116) Chapter 9 Physics and History
- The One Culture?
- University of Chicago Press
This chapter discusses the uses that historical and scientific knowledge have for each other, but first it wants to take up what may be a more unusual topic: the dangers that history poses for physics, and physics for history. The danger in history for the work of physics is that, in contemplating the great work of the past—great heroic revolutions like relativity, quantum mechanics, and so on—we develop such respect for them that we become unable to reassess their place in a final physical theory. General relativity provides a good example. As developed by Einstein in 1915, general relativity appears almost logically inevitable. One of its fundamental principles, the equivalence of gravitation and inertia, says that there is no difference between gravity and the effects of inertia such as centrifugal force. This principle of equivalence can be reformulated as the principle that gravity is just an effect of the curvature of space and time—a beautiful principle from which Einstein's theory of gravitation follows almost uniquely.
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