Repositioning Victorian Sciences: Shifting Centres in Nineteenth-Century Thinking

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David Clifford, Elisabeth Wadge, Alex Warwick, Martin Willis
Anthem Press, May 1, 2006 - Science - 264 pages

'Sciences' were named and formed with great speed in the nineteenth century. Yet what constitutes a 'true' science? The Victorian era facilitated the rise of practices such as phrenology and physiognomy, so-called sciences that lost their status and fell out of use rather swiftly. This collection of essays seeks to examine the marginalised sciences of the nineteenth century in an attempt to define the shifting centres of scientific thinking, specifically asking: how do some sciences emerge to occupy central ground and how do others become consigned to the margins? The essays in this collection explore the influence of nineteenth-century culture on the rise of these sciences, investigating the emergence of marginal sciences such as scriptural geology and spiritualism. 'Repositioning Victorian Sciences' is a valuable addition to our understanding of nineteenth-century science in its original context, and will also be of great interest to those studying the era as a whole.

 

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About the author (2006)

David Clifford teaches English at Homerton College, Cambridge. His research interests focus on eighteenth -and nineteenth-century literature, history of science and scientific ideas. He is co-editor of a collection of essays also published by Anthem Press, 'Outsiders Looking In: The Rossettis, Then and Now' (2004).

Elisabeth Wadge is a professional writer and editor. Since completing her doctorate at the University of Cambridge on the influence of Victorian psychical research upon models of personality and narration, she has continued to supervise students for the English Tripos.

Alex Warwick is Head of the Department of English and Linguistics at the University of Westminster. Her research interests are mainly in the field of late nineteenth-century studies and the Gothic.

Martin Willis is Senior Lecturer in English Literature at the University of Glamorgan. His research interests lie in the intersections between nineteenth-century fiction and marginal sciences, in which area he has published widely.

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