Whewell’s Gazette: Year 2, Vol: #03

Whewell’s Gazette

Your weekly digest of all the best of

Internet history of science, technology and medicine

Editor in Chief: The Ghost of William Whewell

Cornelis Bloemaert

Year 2, Volume #03

Monday 27 July 2015

EDITORIAL: This week brings you the third edition of the second year of Whewell’s Gazette your weekly #histSTM links list containing all that could be rounded up of the histories of science, technology and medicine from the Internet over the last seven days. Recent years has seen an upsurge in the search for women in #histSTM who can and should function as role models for young women contemplating a career in a STM discipline. Unfortunately this search has produced a disturbing historical side effect. More and more articles appear, especially in the Internet, complaining about how one or other of these women was denied the acknowledgement she had earned for work or even had that acknowledgement stolen by a man. Why should I call this development unfortunate? It is unfortunate because in almost all cases the articles are not based on historical facts but on myths leading to massive distortion of the true story and a complete misrepresentation of what actually took place. Yes, many women have had difficulties getting recognition for their achievements in STM but spreading myths is not the right way to go about correcting the problem. A classic example of this problem is the story of Rosalind Franklin, who was born 25 July 1920, and her involvement in the discovery of the structure of DNA.

Rosalind Elsie Franklin Source: Wikimedia Commons

Rosalind Elsie Franklin
Source: Wikimedia Commons

The standard myth, repeated ad nauseam, is that James Watson was shown an X-ray image of DNA, Photo 51, taken by Franklin without her knowledge or permission and in a moment of epiphany realises that DNA is a double helix. This leads to the claim that it was Franklin and not Watson and Crick who discovered the structure of DNA. The story is completely false although it should be acknowledged that Watson’s book The Double Helix is the origin of this myth. For the true story of what happened you should read Matthew Cobb’s article in the Guardian or for greater detail his book Life’s Great Secret, the review of which is below in the book reviews section. The First chapter is available to read in the Sunday Times (first link under Earth & Life Sciences).

The Guardian: Sexism in science: did Watson and Crick really steal Rosalind Franklin’s data?

Physics Today: Rosalind Franklin and the double helix ODNB: Franklin, Rosalind Elsie (1920–1958)

Quotes of the week: “There is nothing good or evil save in the will”. – Epictetus  

“Never send to know for whom the web trolls; it trolls for thee”. – Scott B. Weingart (@scott_bot)

“The set of all sets that wouldn’t be part of any set that would have them as a member. (Groucho’s Paradox)” – Scott B. Weingart (@scott_bot)

“I bet when we do make contact with an advanced alien race, their first message to us will be “Who are U2 and why do we have their album?”” – Dean Burnett {@garwboy)

“She decided to teach postcolonial theory instead of seventeenth-century poetry. Because, well, you know, easier Said than Donne”. – William Germano (@WmGermano)

“Wise men speak because they have something to say; Fools because they have to say something”. – Plato

“We know a lot more than we can prove.” – Richard Feynman

“Always acknowledge your sources. It will never diminish you”. – @upulie

Q: How many academics does it take to change a lightbulb?

A: Change??? Peter Coles (@telescoper)

“What is written without effort is generally read without pleasure”. – Samuel Johnson “If you wish to be a writer, write”. – Epictetus

“To be clear. I am a woman and a historian (and many other things). I am *not* a ‘woman historian’. How many ‘men historians’ do you know?” – Joanne Paul (@Joanne_Paul_)

“If you fancy yourself at the telephone, there is one in the next room.”—G. H. Hardy

“In the interest of PC shouldn’t we talk about ‘diameter disadvantaged’ rather than dwarf planets?” – Thony Christie (@rmathematicus)  

“On 1 April 1898 Beatrix Potter’s paper “On the Germination of the Spores of Agaricineae” was presented at the Linnean Society”.

“Beatrix Potter was not in attendance to hear her paper in the Linnean Society since women were excluded”. – Liam Heneghan (@DublinSoil)

“Science is competitive, aggressive, demanding. It is also imaginative, inspiring, uplifting. You can do it, too.” – Vera Rubin

“Success depends upon previous preparation, and without such preparation there is sure to be failure”. – Confucius  

“Memory is the treasury and guardian of all things”. – Cicero  

Birthdays of the Week:

Richard Owen born 20 July 1804

Richard Owen and his gorgonops by pelycosaur

Richard Owen and his gorgonops by pelycosaur

Letters from Gondwana: Owen, Dickens and the ‘Invention’ of Dinosaurs

The Friends of Charles Darwin: Sir Richard Owen: the archetypal villain

ucmp.berkeley.edu: Richard Owen (1804–1892)

NHM: Richard Owen

Deviant Art: Richard Owen and his Gorgonops

Moon landing 20 July 1969

“Stanley Kubrick was hired to fake the moon landing, but his perfectionism made them film it on location on the moon”. – Duncan MacMaster (@FuriousDShow)

“The moon is a rock against which the hope of many an imagined discovery has been shattered.” – LJ Wilson, 1925 h/t Meg Rosenburg (@trueanomalies)

A mounted slowscan TV camera shows Armstrong as he climbs down the ladder to surface Source: Wikimedia Commons

A mounted slowscan TV camera shows Armstrong as he climbs down the ladder to surface
Source: Wikimedia Commons

 Science Notes: Today in Science History – 20 July

Leaping Robot Blog: “Sir, That’s Not A Footprint…”

Forbes: The Locations of Every Moon Landing [Infographic]

DPLA: Apollo 11 Flight plan

Science Notes: Today in Science History – 21 July – Alan Shepard

Esquire: How Apollo Astronauts Took Out the Trash

Science Notes: Today in Science History – 24 July– The Return of Apollo 11

Command module Columbia of Apollo 11 after splashdown in the Pacific Ocean. Credit: NASA

Command module Columbia of Apollo 11 after splashdown in the Pacific Ocean. Credit: NASA

PHYSICS & ASTRONOMY:

University of Glasgow: Special Collections: Book of the Month: Nicolaus Copernicus De Revolutionibus

Medievalist.net: The Night the Moon exploded and other Lunar tales from the Middle Ages

Quanta Magazine: Famous Fluid Equations Are Incomplete

reddit: Ask Historians: The Manhattan Project

History Ireland: ‘The Hue and Cry of Heresy’ John Toland, Isaac Newton & the Social Context of Scientists

Cosmology: 1838: Friedrich Bessel Measures Distance to a Star

C. A. Jensen, Friedrich Wilhelm Bessel, 1839  (Ny Carlsberg Glyptotek)

C. A. Jensen, Friedrich Wilhelm Bessel, 1839
(Ny Carlsberg Glyptotek)

Darin Hayton: Astrolabes or Mariner’s Astrolabe – A Primer

AIP: From the Physics Today Archives (Pluto)

The Washington Post: The man who feared rationally, that he’d just destroyed the world

AMNH: Vera Rubin and Dark Matter

Brain Pickings: Pioneering Astronomer Vera Rubin on Science, Stereotypes, and Success

Vera Rubin

Vera Rubin

Dannen.com: Recommendations on the Immediate Use of Nuclear Weapons, June 16, 1945

Restricted Data: “We all aged ten years until the plane cleared the island”

Smithsonian.com: Can Sound Explain a 350-Year-Old Clock Mystery

The Getty Iris: Decoding the Medieval Volvelle

Astronomical Vovelle, from Astronomical and Medical Miscellany, English, late fourteenth century, shortly after 1386. The J. Paul Getty Museum, Ms. Ludwig XII 7, fol. 51

Astronomical Vovelle, from Astronomical and Medical Miscellany, English, late fourteenth century, shortly after 1386. The J. Paul Getty Museum, Ms. Ludwig XII 7, fol. 51

Physics Today: The Dayside: A tale of two papers

Restricted Data: The Kyoto Misconception

Dannen.com: Harry S. Truman, Diary, July 25, 1945

Dannen.com: Official Bombing Order, July 25, 1945

Darin Hayton: The Astronomy Exam at Haverford College in 1859

Atlas Obscura: The Lunar Colonies of Our Wildest Dreams

EXPLORATION and CARTOGRAPHY:

British Library: Maps and views blog: The Kangxi atlas in the King’s Topographical Collection

Library of Congress: Railroad Maps, 1820–1900

[Detail] State of Alabama. October. 2nd. 1866

[Detail] State of Alabama. October. 2nd. 1866

Cyprus Mail: Mapping out a journey

The Commercial Space Blog: Did RADARSAT-2 Find HMS Erebus?

Maps of the State Library of NSW: Embroidery: World with all the modern discoveries ca. 1785

tumblr_nrgnzrbO6T1ttttg2o1_1280

MEDICINE & HEALTH:

NYAM: Good eyes are your protection

Migraine Histories: Oliver Cromwell’s Migraine

Dittrick Museum Blog: By the Light of the Fever-, Gout- and Plague-Inducing Moon: Lunar Medicine

Frontispiece from Ars Magna Lucis et Umbrae showing the moon reflecting the sun’s light like a mirror.

Frontispiece from Ars Magna Lucis et Umbrae showing the moon reflecting the sun’s light like a mirror.

Collectors Weekly: Healing Spas and Ugly Clubs: How Victorians Taught Us to Treat People With Disabilities

Mosaic: Growing up as the world’s first test-tube baby

Science Notes: Today in Science History – 25 July – Louise Joy Brown’s birthday

Nursing Clio: Anne Bradstreet’s Elegies for her Grandchildren

Conciatore: Donato Altomare

NYAM: Spoiled by a Certain Englishman? The Copying of Andreas Vesalius in Thomas Geminus’ Compendiosa

Adam and Eve in the Academy’s copy of the 1559 English edition of Geminus’ Compendiosa.

Adam and Eve in the Academy’s copy of the 1559 English edition of Geminus’ Compendiosa.

CHSTM: News and Notes: Revolutions in the Atmosphere: Benjamin Rush’s Universal System of Medicine

Advances in the History of Psychology: History and the Hoffman Report: A Round-Up

TECHNOLOGY:

Conciatore: San Giusto Alle Mura

Idle Words: Web Design: The First Hundred Years

Science Notes: Today in Science History –22 July – First solo flight around the world

Wiley Post waving to the crowd before taking off to make the first solo flight around the world. As he waved, he said “So long, see you in about six days!” Credit: Still taken from British Pathé newsreel 1933.

Wiley Post waving to the crowd before taking off to make the first solo flight around the world. As he waved, he said “So long, see you in about six days!” Credit: Still taken from British Pathé newsreel 1933.

The Renaissance Mathematicus: A double bicentennial – George contra Ada – Reality contra Perception

Rachel Laudan: Roman Glass: Transformation by Fire

The H-Word: Humphry Davy and the “safety lamp controversy”

Stephenson’s lamp (left) and Davy’s wire gauze lamp (right). On 25 January 1816, Davy reported to the Royal Society that prototypes of his gauze lamp had been tested “in two of the most dangerous mines near Newcastle, with perfect success”. From George Clementson Greenwell, A Practical Treatise on Mine Engineering (1869).

Stephenson’s lamp (left) and Davy’s wire gauze lamp (right). On 25 January 1816, Davy reported to the Royal Society that prototypes of his gauze lamp had been tested “in two of the most dangerous mines near Newcastle, with perfect success”. From George Clementson Greenwell, A Practical Treatise on Mine Engineering (1869).

Amiga 30: 30th Anniversary Event

Public Domain Review: The Mysteries of Nature and Art

History Today: George Stephenson’s First Steam Locomotive

Getting up steam: Stephenson's 'Blucher', 1814

Getting up steam: Stephenson’s ‘Blucher’, 1814

Rachel Laudan: My Great Grandmother’s Industrially Processed Food

EARTH & LIFE SCIENCES:

The Sunday Times: Matthew Cobb, Life’s Greatest Secret: Chapter 1: Genes Before DNA

Alembic Rare Books: All The Animated Beings in Nature: An Illustrated Natural History Dictionary Published in 1802

000118e_1024x1024

Brian Pickings: Gorgeous 19th-Century Illustrations of Owls and Ospreys

The Guardian: Natural History Museum’s Dippy the dinosaur to go on holiday

Darwin Project: Darwin’s Scientific Women

Smithsonian Libraries: Crocodiles on the Ceiling

The Sloane Letters Blog: Straight From the Horse’s Mouth

Public Domain Review: Bird Gods (1898)

19862820776_ef38fd9994_z-2

facebook: Paleontologists and their Prehistoric Pets

Notches: Red War on the Family: An Interview with Erica Ryan

NCSE Blog: The Very Hungry Jurist, Part 2

The EBB & Flow: The first null model war in ecology didn’t prevent the second one

Forbes: The Man Who Named The Dinosaurs Also Debunked Tales of Sea Serpents

The Guardian: Archaeologists find possible evidence of earliest human agriculture

Dan Hicks: Archaeology, Austerity and Why Historic Environment Records Matter

Data is Nature: From Constants of Optical Mineralogy

CHEMISTRY:

Voices of the Manhattan Project: Joseph Katz’s Interview

Voices of the Manhattan Project: Richard Baker’s Interview

Forbes: Forgotten Faces of Science: Percy Julian [Comic]

Source Forbes

Source Forbes

Science Notes: Today in Science History – 23 July – Sir William Ramsey

Science Notes: Today in Science History – 26 July – William “Bill” Mitchell

META – HISTORIOGRAPHY, THEORY, RESOURCES and OTHER:

Now Apperaring: What is a fair review?

Royal Society: Notes and Records: Fit for print: developing an institutional model of scientific periodical publishing in England, 1665–ca.1714

Royal Society: Notes and Records: Journals, learned societies and money: Philosophical Transactions, ca. 1750–1900

The Best Schools: Sheldrake–Shermer Dialogue on the Nature of Science May thru July 2015

Conciatore: The Neighbors

storify: Delivering Impact: A collection of tweets from sessions at the BSHS annual conference and the SIP conference 2015

homunculus: Understanding the understanding of science

Sage Journals: PUS: …and the new editor of Public Understanding of Science will be…?

Rational Action: Warren Weaver on the Epistemology of Crude Formal Analysis: Relativistic Cosmology and the ‘General Theory of Air Warfare’

Willem de Sitter and Albert Einstein discuss the equations governing the dynamics of the universe

Willem de Sitter and Albert Einstein discuss the equations governing the dynamics of the universe

The New Yorker: In The Memory Ward

Aby Warburg (second from left) was the spirit behind the iconographic studies that dominated much of twentieth-century art history. CREDIT COURTESY THE WARBURG INSTITUTE

Aby Warburg (second from left) was the spirit behind the iconographic studies that dominated much of twentieth-century art history.
CREDIT COURTESY THE WARBURG INSTITUTE

the many-headed monster: The antiquarian listens: unexpected voices of the people

Journalism & Communication Monographs: Atomic Roaches and Test-Tube Babies: Bentley Glass and Science Communications

ESOTERIC:

History of Alchemy: Pico della Mirandola

distillatio: What makes a negromancer an alchemist?

The Recipes Project: Nicander’s snake repellent recipe. Part 1. Practical myth and magic

Tiresias, apparently not yet aware of having become a woman, beats up a pair of frisky snakes. Woodcut illustration, 1690 CE. Source: Wikimedia Commons

Tiresias, apparently not yet aware of having become a woman, beats up a pair of frisky snakes. Woodcut illustration, 1690 CE. Source: Wikimedia Commons

BOOK REVIEWS:

Science Book a Day: The Weather Experiment: The Pioneers who Sought to see the Future weather-experiment

The New York Times: Taking on ‘The Vital Question’ About Life

Science Book a Day: De humani corporis fabrica libri septem (On the fabric of the human body in seven books)

Der Spiegel: Die Roboter aus dem Morgenland

Dynamic Ecology Theory and Reality: An Introduction to Philosophy of Science by Peter Godfrey-Smith

The Dispersal of Darwin: The Story of Life: A First Book about Evolution MrFOx-story-of-life-book

The Guardian: Life’s big surprises: The Vital Question and Life’s Greatest Secret reviewed

The Page 99 Test: Ill Composed

NEW BOOKS:

Amazon: Making “nature”: The History of a Scientific Journal

The University of Chicago Press: Osiris, Volume 30: Scientific Masculinities

Historiens de la santé: Working in a world of hurt: Trauma and resilience in the narratives of medical personal in warzones

51zkzLWhFuL._SX300_BO1,204,203,200_

University of Pittsburgh Press: New Natures: Joining Environmental History with Science and Technology Studies

Math Geek: The New “Sine” of Mathematical Geekdom

OUP: Animal, Vegetable, Mineral? How eighteenth-century science disrupted the natural order

Historiens de la santé: Historical epistemology and the making of modern Chinese medicine

Historiens de la santé: Bodies, Speech, and Reproductive Knowledge in Early Mdern England

Historiens de la santé: Norm als Zwang, Pflicht und Traum: Normierende versus individualisierende Bestrebungen in der Medizin

ART & EXHIBITIONS

The J. Paul Getty Museum: Touching the Past: The Hand and the Medieval Book 7 July–27 September 2015

Abingdon County Hall Museum: Star Power: 50 years of Fusion Research

CP05j-438-01

MHS Oxford: ‘Dear Harry…’ – Henry Moseley: A Scientist Lost to War

Science Museum: Churchill’s Scientists

NHM: Britain’s First Geological Map

THEATRE AND OPERA:

The H-Word: The Skriker: global warming, eco-fairytales, and science on the stage

 Maxine Peake in the eponymous role in The Skriker at The Royal Exchange Theatre in Manchester. Photograph: Christopher Thomond for The Guardian

Maxine Peake in the eponymous role in The Skriker at The Royal Exchange Theatre in Manchester. Photograph: Christopher Thomond for The Guardian

Royal Exchange Theatre: The Skriker Closes: 1 August 2015

Arts Theatre: Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein Closes 31 July 2015

Young Vic: A Number 3 July–15 August 2015

FILMS AND EVENTS:

Nature: Experimental psychology: The anatomy of obedience

trailers.apple.com: Experimenter: The Stanley Milgram Story

MHS Oxford: From Semaphore Flags to Telephones 1 August 2015

Discover Medical London: Walking Tour: Harley Street: Healers and Hoaxers

Harley-Street-Dreamstime-Banner

Wellcome Collection: Discussion: The Thing Is… Conflict Medicine 30 July 2015 PAINTINGS OF THE WEEK:

GeorgeStephenson

George Stephenson – invented a Miner’s Safety Lamp in the second half of 1815 (simultaneously with Humphry Day)

TELEVISION:

BBC 4: Secret Knowledge: Wondrous Obsessions: The Cabinet of Curiosities

Fox 25: “Galileo’s World” exhibit at OU!

Channel 4: The Saboteurs ITV: The Day They Dropped the Bomb

SLIDE SHOW:

VIDEOS:

Youtube: Kepler’s First Law of Motion – Elliptical Orbits (Astronomy)

Youtube: Picturing Galileo

Youtube: What Was The Young Earth Like? – Big History Project

Youtube: Professor Povey’s Perplexing Problems – Official Video

Critical Karaoke: Telstar 1: “A Day in the Life”

TED: Steve Silberman: The forgotten history of autism

RADIO:

BBC Radio 4: Making History: Tom Holland, Andrea Wulf and Dr Paul Warde discuss issues from environmental history

PODCASTS:

Ottoman History Project: Islamic Hospitals in Medieval Egypt and the Levant

ANNOUNCEMENTS:

edX: Internet course: The Book Histories Across Time and Space

University of York: Medical History William Bynum Essay Prize

go fund me: Dr Claudia Alexander Memorial Fund for academic scholarships in STEM

UCL STS: CfP: Workshop: Technology, Environment and Modern Britain 27 April 2015

The Warburg Institute: Conference: Ptolemy’s Science of the Stars in the Middle Ages 5-7 November 2015

ICHST 2015: 25th International Congress of History of Science and Technology Rio de Janeiro 23-29 July 2017

Durham University: Where science and society meet: University Museums Group and University Museums in Scotland joint conference 23-24 September 2015

Royal Society: Open House Weekend History of Science Lecture Series 19-20 September 2015

The Birkbeck Trauma Project: Conference: Cultures of Harm in Institutions of Care: Historical and Contemporary Perspectives 15–16 April 2016

All Souls College Oxford: CfP: Charles Hutton (1737–1823): being mathematical in the Georgian period 17-18 December 2015

H-Sci-Med-Tech: CfP: Women and Science (Forum–Early Modern Women: An Interdisciplinary Journal)

H-Announce: Call for Contributions to a Special Issue of Environment and History on Parks and Gardens 31 December 2015

Macquarie University Sydney: CfP: Foreign Bodies, Intimate Ecologies: Transformations in Environmental History 11–13 February 2016

Ada Lovelace: Celebrating 200 years of a computer visionary: Student scholarship available for symposium

KOME: Call for articles in science studies

LOOKING FOR WORK:

The Royal Institution: Christmas Lectures Assistant

University of Leeds: Leeds Masters Scholarship Scheme

University of Warwick: Teaching Fellow in the History of Medicine

University of Nottingham: British Academy Fellowship for historical geography scholar

About thonyc

Aging freak who fell in love with the history of science and now resides mostly in the 16th century.
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