The Ancient Roots of Modern Science--from the Baby
Author: Dick Teresi
Publisher: Simon and Schuster
View: 8271Lost Discoveries, Dick Teresi's innovative history of science, explores the unheralded scientific breakthroughs from peoples of the ancient world -- Babylonians, Egyptians, Indians, Africans, New World and Oceanic tribes, among others -- and the non-European medieval world. They left an enormous heritage in the fields of mathematics, astronomy, cosmology, physics, geology, chemistry, and technology. The mathematical foundation of Western science is a gift from the Indians, Chinese, Arabs, Babylonians, and Maya. The ancient Egyptians developed the concept of the lowest common denominator, and they developed a fraction table that modern scholars estimate required 28,000 calculations to compile. The Babylonians developed the first written math and used a place-value number system. Our numerals, 0 through 9, were invented in ancient India; the Indians also boasted geometry, trigonometry, and a kind of calculus. Planetary astronomy as well may have begun with the ancient Indians, who correctly identified the relative distances of the known planets from the sun, and knew the moon was nearer to the earth than the sun was. The Chinese observed, reported, dated, recorded, and interpreted eclipses between 1400 and 1200 b.c. Most of the names of our stars and constellations are Arabic. Arabs built the first observatories. Five thousand years ago, the Sumerians said the earth was circular. In the sixth century, a Hindu astronomer taught that the daily rotation of the earth on its axis provided the rising and setting of the sun. Chinese and Arab scholars were the first to use fossils scientifically to trace earth's history. Chinese alchemists realized that most physical substances were merely combinations of other substances, which could be mixed in different proportions. Islamic scholars are legendary for translating scientific texts of many languages into Arabic, a tradition that began with alchemical books. In the eleventh century, Avicenna of Persia divined that outward qualities of metals were of little value in classification, and he stressed internal structure, a notion anticipating Mendeleyev's periodic chart of elements. Iron suspension bridges came from Kashmir, printing from India; papermaking was from China, Tibet, India, and Baghdad; movable type was invented by Pi Sheng in about 1041; the Quechuan Indians of Peru were the first to vulcanize rubber; Andean farmers were the first to freeze-dry potatoes. European explorers depended heavily on Indian and Filipino shipbuilders, and collected maps and sea charts from Javanese and Arab merchants. The first comprehensive, authoritative, popularly written, multicultural history of science, Lost Discoveries fills a crucial gap in the history of science.
Author: Jubilee Purkayastha
View: 7408This work is a comprehensive information on the indigenous bioresources of North Eastern India with the scope of bioprospecting for discovery and commercialization of new sources and products and long-term ecological balance. The exploration, conservation and sustainable utilization of bioresources of world’s Megabiodiversity Hotspots are undeniable. North Eastern India is a recognised biodiversity hot spot where the evolutionary forces are at its optimum, making this region as centre of origin for many species. Although little bit exploratory studies have been conducted in this part of the globe but a scientific exploitation of the bioresources is almost lacking. Unscientific exploitation and overexploitation without proper knowledge of the bioresources may lead to imbalanced ecosystem of this mega diversity region. At the same time, very less exploration and exploitation will hamper biodiversity based development. Today, unscientific dramatic changes are underway in this region. Human activities are changing, degrading and destroying the bioresources in an unplanned manner. Scientific bioprospecting of the bioresources will boost the economy while ensuring conservation. This book offers comprehensive information about various levels of bioprospecting of the gene pool of this Indo-Burma Mega Biodiversity Hot Spot, the North East India, which is endowed with huge biodiversity potential for exploration and exploitation for the benefit of humankind. Also, this book highlights the less and merely explored part of the indigenous biodiversity of North East India with explanation towards their better sustainable exploitation for benefit of the people, economy and environment. The novelty of the book lies in expert coverage of the bioresources of this mega-diverse region including plants, microbes, insects etc. with provisions for their sustainable scientific utilization. This book portrays North East India as a melting pot of bioresources which are little explored and also those resources which are still to be explored. The book mainly highlights the bioprospecting approaches for North East Indian bioresources, and thus, it make itself a unique one in filling the knowledge gap that is there regarding the bioprospecting of the biodiversity of this special region on the earth. The book concludes by the ecotourism potential of this region. The target audiences for this book include biodiversity economists who are working on technology and bioresource management issues, and especially on biotechnology and biodiversity, development economists addressing the issues of bioresources in developing countries. These people may be in academia, in government, in non-governmental organizations and in private companies. The other target audiences group is policy scholars in government/public sectors who are interested in issues of biotechnology, IPRs, and biodiversity. In addition, scholars/experts in both development studies and resource management studies form another group of target audiences. Also, the book will be useful for the interaction between developed and developing nations regarding the issues of biodiversity and bioprospecting, as North Eastern India is the hub of Biodiversity.
The Aesthetics of Conviviality in Native Amazonia
Author: Joanna Overing,Alan Passes
Category: Social Science
View: 8387The Anthropology of Love and Anger questions the very foundations of western sociological thought. In their examination of indigenous peoples from across the South American continent, the contributors to this volume have come to realise that western thought does not possess the vocabulary to define even the fundamentals of indigenous thought and practice. The dualisms of public and private, political and domestic, individual and collective, even male and female, in which western anthropology was founded cannot legitimately be applied to peoples whose 'sociality' is based on an 'aesthetics of community'. For indigenous people success is measured by the extent to which conviviality, (all that is peaceful, harmonious and sociable) has been attained. Yet conviviality is not just reliant on love and good but instead on an even balance between all that is constructive, love, and all that is destructive, anger. With case studies from across the South American region, ranging from the (so-called) fierce Yanomami of Venezuela and Brazil to the Enxet of Paraguay, and with discussions on topics from the efficacy of laughter, the role of language, anger as a marker of love and even homesickness, The Anthropology of Love and Anger is a seminal, fascinating work which should be read by all students and academics in the post-colonial world.
A Forest People
Author: William Milliken,Bruce Albert,Gale Goodwin Gomez
Publisher: Royal Botanic Gardens Kew
View: 1378A highly readable book about the remarkable relationship between a forest people and their environment — the watershed between the Brazilian Amazon and the Venezuelan Orinoco. It provides a fascinating insight into their culture and intricate knowledge of plants, animals and the ecology of the environment in which they live.
An Annotated Bibliography of Core Works
Author: Ana María Cobos,Ana Lya Sater
Publisher: McFarland Publishing
View: 4307The Latin American studies collections at many community, junior and four year colleges, and large public libraries often contain materials that are too specialized, uneven, outdated, incomplete, or written in Spanish or Portuguese--thus rendering them essentially useless to English-reading patrons. Better materials are out there, but librarians simply have not had, until now, a good resource guide to help in locating them. This work, designed as an acquisitions tool for colleges and libraries, is an annotated bibliography of approximately 1,400 recommended books published from 1986 through 2000 in the field of Latin American studies. It is divided into chapters that deal with reference works, descriptive accounts and travel guides, the humanities, language and literature, the social sciences, and science and technology. For the purposes of this book, Latin America is defined as all geographic locations south of the Rio Grande. While these are chiefly Spanish and Portuguese speaking regions, works about French, English, and Dutch speaking areas are also included. The literary works of authors living abroad are included if they are considered quintessentially Latin American. Periodicals, children's literature, audio-visual resources, and works about the Hispanic and Latino experience in the United States are not included. The majority of the works presented here were selected based on reviews from Booklist, Choice, Hispanic American Historical Review, Library Journal, Los Angeles Times Book Review, New York Review of Books, New York Times Book Review and Publisher's Weekly; also consulted were the catalogs of major university presses that focus on Latin American studies.
Studies of an Amazonian Foundation Myth
Author: Gerardo Reichel-Dolmatoff
Publisher: Harvard University Press
View: 7976Through Gerardo Reichel-Dolmatoff's translations and commentaries of the yurupari fertility mythologem and ritual complex, Tukano oral art is revealed as an important expression of tribal philosophical and religious thought. The four Tukano "texts" in this volume contain coded cultural history and lead us into the meaning of oral traditions.