A History of Optics from Greek Antiquity to the Nineteenth Century

A History of Optics from Greek Antiquity to the Nineteenth Century

by Olivier Darrigol
     
 

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This book is a long-term history of optics, from early Greek theories of vision to the nineteenth-century victory of the wave theory of light. It shows how light gradually became the central entity of a domain of physics that no longer referred to the functioning of the eye; it retraces the subsequent competition between medium-based and corpuscular concepts of light;… See more details below

Overview

This book is a long-term history of optics, from early Greek theories of vision to the nineteenth-century victory of the wave theory of light. It shows how light gradually became the central entity of a domain of physics that no longer referred to the functioning of the eye; it retraces the subsequent competition between medium-based and corpuscular concepts of light; and it details the nineteenth-century flourishing of mechanical ether theories. The author
critically exploits and sometimes completes the more specialized histories that have flourished in the past few years. The resulting synthesis brings out the actors' long-term memory, their dependence on broad cultural shifts, and the evolution of disciplinary divisions and connections. Conceptual precision,
textual concision, and abundant illustration make the book accessible to a broad variety of readers interested in the origins of modern optics.

Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher

"...the only concise, intellectual history of optics covering such a long period. Instructors in the history of science will no doubt use it as a textbook in introductory history of physics courses; physicists, and specifically optical physicists, may enjoy witnessing the development of the discipline through the millennia." -- Jacqueline Feke, Physics Today

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780191627453
Publisher:
OUP Oxford
Publication date:
01/26/2012
Sold by:
Barnes & Noble
Format:
NOOK Book
File size:
23 MB
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