|Taught in 1997 by Joel Genuth at the University of Maryland, College
Requirements and Grading
Two, one-hour exams (each counting for 15% of grade)
One research paper, approximately 15 pages (30% of grade)
One final exam (30% of grade)
Class contributions (10% of grade)
Galison, Peter and Bruce Hevly. Big Science: The Growth of Large-Scale
Research. Stanford: Stanford University Press, 1992.
Jungnickel, Christa and Russell McCormmach. The Intellectual Mastery
of Nature, vol. 2, The Now Mighty Theoretical Physics, 1870-1925. Chicago:
University of Chicago Press, 1986.
Kevles, Daniel J. The Physicists: The History of a Scientific Community
in Modern America. Cambridge: Harvard University Press, 1995.
Pais, Abraham. Inward Bound: Of Matter and Forces in the Physical
World. New York: Oxford University Press, 1986.
Additional Readings not in the assigned books will be xeroxed
for your purchase or placed on reserve at Hornbake.
Weeky Course Outline
Introduction: What history of science is about; what questions
historians of science ask
Weeks 1 & 2 The Institutions, Concepts, and Horizons of 19th-Century
Weeks 3 & 4 Relativity Theorizing, Quantum Theorizing, and Experimental
Week 5 Catch-up and First Hour Exam
Weeks 6 & 7 Quantum Mechanics, Wave Mechanics, and "Crisis" in Physics
Weeks 8 & 9 Physics American Style: Philanthropies, Industrial Laboratories,
and the Creation of New Specialties
Week 10 Second Hour Exam; meetings on term papers
Weeks 11 & 12 Physicists and the U.S. Government in World War II
13 & 14 Physicists in Germany and Russia; The Postwar Framework
Weeks 1 and 2
Jungnickel: 1-32, 59-72, and 154-160.
Kevles, 25-44, 60-74.
"On Faraday's Lines of Force." The Scientific
Papers of James Clerk Maxwell, vol. 1, edited by W. D. Niven. Printed
several times, most recently in New York: Dover, 1965. Read 156-209.
This is a long assignment, but note that I have only assigned Parts
1 and 2 of an even longer paper. Think of this assignment as shock treatment
in the problems of doing history as well as exposure to a seminal work
of 19th-century physics. Can one read for the historically interesting
content of an extended scientific treatise without getting absorbed in
considering the the technical and logical soundness of the treatise?
Maxwell, James Clerk "Molecules." In ibid., vol. 2, 361-377.
Mach, Ernst. "The Economical Nature of Physical Inquiry" (1892). Pages
186-213 of Popular Scientific Lectures, first published in 1894
and reprinted numerous times. Translated by Thomas J. McCormack and printed
in the United States at La Salle, Il: Open Court Publishing.
Boltzmann, Ludwig. "On Energetics" (1896) and "On the Indispensability
of Atomism in Natural Science" (1897). Pages 37-56 of Theoretical Physics
and Philosophical Problems, edited by Brian McGuiness. Boston: D. Reidel,
Weeks 3 and 4
Jungnickel, 98-111 211-253, 323-334, and 304-323.
Pais, 35-92, 163-207.
Holton, Gerald. "Mach, Einstein, and the Search for Reality" and "Einstein,
Michelson, and the ‘Crucial' Experiment." Pp. 237-370 of Thematic Origins
of Scientfic Thought: Kepler to Einstein.
Cambridge: Harvard University
DON'T PANIC! Skip Sections III, IV, V, and IX of the latter.
Holton, Gerald. "Of Physics, Love, and Other Passions: The Letters
of Albert and Mileva." Pp. 45-73 of Einstein, History and Other Passions.
Woodbury, NY: AIP Press, 1995. Concentrate on 59-64 and 69-72.
Kuhn, Thomas S. Black Body Theory and the Quantum Discontinuity,
1894-1912. New York: Oxford University Press, 1978. Pp. 3-37 and and
Lorentz, H.A. "Michelson's Interference Experiment" (1895) and "Electromagnetic
Phenomena in a System Moving with any Velocity Less than that of Light,"
(1904). Pp. 1-34 of The Principle of Relativity.
New York: Dover,
Einstein, Albert. "On the Electrodynamics of Moving Bodies" (1905).
Best translated in pp. 391-415 of Arthur I. Miller, Albert Einstein's
Special Theory of Relativity: Emergence (1905) and Early Interpretation.
MA: Addison-Wesley, 1981.
Cunningham, E. The Principle of Relativity. Cambridge: Cambridge
University Press, 1914. Pp. 193-204.
Magie, W.F. "The Primary Concepts of Physics." Science, 35 (1912):
Planck, Max. "The Origin and Development of Quantum Theory" (1920).
Pp. 159-179 of A Survey of Physics, transltated by R. Jones and
D.H. Williams. London: Methuen, 1925.
Rutherford, Ernest. "Scattering of and Particles by Matter and the
Structure of the Atom." Originally in Philosophicl Magazine 21 (1911).
Bohr, Niels. "On the Constitution of Atoms and Molecules." Philosophical
Magazine 26 (1913): 1-25, 476-502, 857-875.
Weeks 6 and 7
Pais, 208-220, 244-264
Bohr, Niels, H.A. Kramers, and J.C. Slater. "The Quantum Theory of
Radiation." Originally in Philosophical Magazine 47(1924): 785-802.
Reprinted on pp. 159-176 of Sources of Quantum Mechanics, B.L. Van
der Waerden, editor. New York: Dover, 1967.
Heisenberg, Werner. "Quantum-Theoretical Reinterpretation of Kinematic
and Mechanical Relations" (1925). Originally in Zeitschrift für
Physik. Translated and reprinted on pp. 261-276 of Sources of Quantum
de Broglie, Louis. "Investigations on Quantum Theory" (1925). Originally
in Annales de Physique, translated and reprinted on pp. 73-93 of
Mechanics, edited by Gunther Ludwig. New York: Pergamon Press, 1968.
Schrödinger, Erwin. "Quantization as an Eigenvalue Problem" (1926),
first and second communications. And "On the Relationship of the Heisenberg-Born-Jordan
Quantum Mechanics to Mine" (1926). All originally in Annalen der Physik.
All translated and reprinted on pp. 94-150 of Wave Mechanics.
Born, Max. "Physical Aspects of Quantum Mechanics." Nature 119
Bohr, Niels. "The Quantum Postulate and the Recent Development of Atomic
Theory," (1927). Originally published in Nature, reprinted on pp.
52-91 of Bohr's Atomic Theory and the Description of Nature. Cambridge:
Cambridge University Press, 1961.
Bohr, Niels. "Discussion with Einstein on Epistemological Problems
in Atomic Physics." Pp. 199-242 of Albert Einstein: Philosopher-Scientist,
edited by Paul Schilpp. New York: Tudor, 1949.
Einstein, Albert. "Reply to Criticisms." Pp. 665-688 of ibid.
Einstein, Albert, B. Podolsky, and N. Rosen. "Can Quantum-mechanical
Description of Physical Reality be Considered Complete?" Physical Review
Weeks 8 and 9
Kevles, 25-101, 170-235.
Pais, 296-323, 397-444
Seidel in Galison, 21-45
Hounshell in Galison, 236-261
Servos, John W. "Mathematics and the physical sciences in America,
1880-1930." Isis 77 (1986): 611-629.
Dupree, Science in the Federal Government, 271-301.
Weart, Spencer. "The Physics Business in America, 1919-1940: A Statistical
Reconnaissance." In The Sciences in the American Context: New Perspectives,
edited by Nathan Reingold. Washington: Smithsonian Institution Press, 1979:
Reich, Leonard S. The Making of American Industrial Research: Science
and Business at GE and Bell, 1876-1926. Cambridge: Cambridge University
Press, 1985. Chapters 5 and 8
Kohler, Robert E. Partners in Science: Foundations and Natural Scientists,
1900-1945. Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1991. 201-263.
Weart, Spencer. "The Solid Community." In Lillian Hoddeson, et. al,
eds., Out of the Crystal Maze: Chapters from the History of Solid-State
Physics. Oxford and New York, Oxford Univ. Press: 1992.
Compton, Karl T. "Physics in 1931," MIT Archives, Speech File, 77-60,
Corbino, Orso Mario. "The New Goals of Experimental Physics," translated
by Fausta Segrè, Minerva, 9 (1971), 530-538; originally "I
nuovi compiti della fisica sperimentale," Atti Società Italiana
Progresso delle Scienze, 18 (1929), 1157.
Weeks 11 and 12
Kevles, 252-266, 287-323
Hoddeson in Galison, 265-289
Dupree, A. Hunter. "The Great Instauration of 1940: The Organization
of Scientific Research for War." Pp. 443-467 of The Twentieth-Century
Sciences, Gerald Holton editor. New York: Norton, 1970.
Genuth, Joel. "Microwave Radar, the Atomic Bomb, and the Background
to U.S. Research Priorities in World War II." Science, Technology, and
Human Values, 13 (1988): 276-289.
Weeks 13 and 14
Galison, Hevley, and Lowen in Galison and Hevley, 46-77
Schweber in Galison and Hevley, 149-183.
Needell in Galison and Hevley, 290-311.
Neufeld, Michael. "The guided missile and the Third Reich: Peenemunde
and the forging of a technological revolutionon." In Science, technology,
and national socialism, edited by Monika Renneberg and Mark Walker.
Cambridge [England] and New York: Cambridge University Press, 1994.
Wise, M. Norton. "Pascual Jordan : quantum mechanics, psychology, National
Socialism" in the same volume as the Neufeld.
Walker, Mark. Nazi science: myth, truth, and the German atomic bomb.
York: Plenum Press, 1995. Pp. 183-242.
Holloway, David. Stalin and the Bomb: The Soviet Union and Atomic
Energy 1939-1956. New Haven: Yale University Press, 1994. Pp. 8-48,
Jeffries, Zay , et al. "Prospectus on Nucleonics." Franck, James, et
al. "The Franck Report." Rabinowitch, Eugene. "Memo to the Committee on
Panel Discussions, July 12, 1945." All published as Appendices on pp. 539-575
of Smith, Alice K., A Peril and a Hope: The Scientists' Movement in
America, 1945-1947. Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1965.
Bush, Vannevar. Science the Endless Frontier: A Report to the President
on a Program for Postwar Scientific Research. Washington: Government
Printing Office, 1945. Pp. 1-12, 17-22, 70-117.