AIP History Center Newsletter
Volume 41, No. 1, Spring 2009

Recent Publications of Interest
Compiled by Will Thomas

This is our usual compilation of some (by no means all) recently published articles on the history of modern physics, astronomy, geophysics and allied fields. Note that these lists have been posted on our Website since 1994, and you can search the full text of all of them (along with our annual book bibliography as well as other parts of our Website) by using our Search page at Enter your search term(s) in the box, then scroll down in the results page to "Source: Bibliographies;" you may need to click on "More Results."
For a complete list of our bibliographies of published books and journal articles on the history of physics and allied fields, visit

Historical Studies in the Natural Sciences, Vol. 38, No. 4 is a special issue on the topic “Surviving the Squeeze: National Laboratories in the 1970s and 1980s,” featuring the articles: Robert Seidel, “From Factory to Farm: Dissemination of Computing in High Energy Physics;” Mark Bodnarczuk and Lillian Hoddeson, “Megascience in Particle Physics: The Birth of an Experiment String at Fermilab;” Robert Crease, “Recombinant Science: The Birth of the Relativistic Heavy Ion Collider (RHIC);” and Catherine Westfall, “Retooling for the Future: Launching the Advanced Light Source at Lawrence’s Laboratory, 1980–1986.” Vol. 39, No. 1 includes Buhm Soon Park, “Between Accuracy and Manageability: Computational Imperatives in Quantum Chemistry,” on calculating solutions to the Schrödinger equation; and Cristina Olivotto, “The G-Stack Collaboration (1954): An Experiment of Transition” on the study of cosmic rays.

Centaurus, Vol. 50, No. 3 features Olivier Darrigol, “Empirical Challenges and Concept Formation in the History of Hydrodynamics;” Michael Eckert, “Theory from Wind Tunnels: Empirical Roots of Twentieth-century Fluid Dynamics;” Art Jonkers, “The Pursuit of Magnetic Shadows: The Formal-Empirical Dipole Field of Early-Modern Geomagnetism;” and Gregory Good, “Between Data, Mathematical Analysis, and Physical Theory: Research on Earth’s Magnetism in the 19th Century.” No. 4 contains Patrick Boner, “Kepler’s Early Astrological Calendars: Matter, Methodology, and Multidisciplinarity.” Vol. 51, No. 1 is dedicated to “Gender and Networking in Twentieth-century Physical Sciences,” with the physics-related articles: Staffan Wennerholm, “On the Outskirts of Physics: Eva von Bahr as an Outsider Within Early 20th-Century Swedish Experimental Physics;” and Maria Rentetzi, “Gender, Science, and Politics: Queen Frederika and Nuclear Research in Post-war Greece.”

Physics in Perspective, Vol. 10, No. 3 includes Christopher Graney, “But Still, It Moves: Tides, Stellar Parallax, and Galileo’s Commitment to the Copernican Theory;” Jeremy Bernstein, “John Bell and the Identical Twins;” Sidney Borowitz, “The Norwegian and the Englishman” on Kristian Birkeland and Sydney Chapman; and Dwight Neuenschwander and Sallie Watkins, “Professional and Personal Coherence: The Life and Work of Melba Newell Phillips.” No. 4 includes Helge Kragh, “Pierre Duhem, Entropy, and Christian Faith;” Gary Weisel, “Properties and Phenomena: Basic Plasma Physics and Fusion Research in Postwar America;” Robert Crease, “The National Synchrotron Light Source, Part I: Bright Idea;” and the Physical Tourist, written by Michael Berry and Brian Pollard, explores “Physics in Bristol.”

Studies in the History and Philosophy of Modern Physics, Vol. 39, No. 3 contains Aitor Anduaga, “The Realist Interpretation of the Atmosphere;” Amit Hagar, “Length Matters: The Einstein-Swann Correspondence and the Constructive Approach to the Special Theory of Relativity;” Anthony Duncan and Michel Janssen, “Pascual Jordan’s Resolution of the Conundrum of the Wave-Particle Duality of Light;” No. 4 contains Giovanni Valente, “John von Neumann’s Mathematical ‘Utopia’ in Quantum Theory.” Vol. 40, No. 1 contains Alexander Afriat, “How Weyl Stumbled Across Electricity while Pursuing Mathematical Justice;” and Ben Almassi, “Trust in Expert Testimony: Eddington’s 1919 Eclipse Expedition and the British Response to General Relativity.”

Studies in the History and Philosophy of Science, Part A, Vol. 39, No. 2 includes Francis Lucian Reid, “William Wales (ca. 1734–1798): Playing the Astronomer;” and the discussion by Darrell Rowbottom, “N-rays and the Semantic View of Scientific Progress.” No. 3 includes Richard Staley, “Worldviews and Physicists’ Experience of Disciplinary Change: On the Uses of ‘Classical’ Physics;” Charlotte Bigg, “Evident Atoms: Visuality in John Perrin’s Brownian Motion Research;” Suman Seth, “Crafting the Quantum: Arnold Sommerfeld and the Older Quantum Theory;” David Bloor, “Sichtbarmachung, Common Sense, and the Construction of Fluid Mechanics: The Cases of Hele-Shaw and Ludwig Prandtl;” and Cristina Chimisso, “From Phenomenology to Phenomenotechnique: The Role of Early Twentieth-century Physics in Gaston Bachelard’s Philosophy.”

Archive for History of Exact Sciences, Vol. 63, No. 1 features Enric Pérez, “Ehrenfest’s Adiabatic Hypothesis and the Old Quantum Theory.” No. 2 features Bruce Pourciau, “Proposition II (Book I) of Newton’s Principia.”

British Journal for the History of Science, Vol. 41, No. 3 features Simone Turchetti, Katrina Dean, Simon Naylor, and Martin Siegert, “Accidents and Opportunities: A History of the Radio Echo-sounding of Antarctica, 1958–79.” No. 4 has Frank James, “The Janus Face of Modernity: Michael Faraday in the Twentieth Century.”

In Science in Context, Vol. 21, No. 3, Alejandro Gangui and Eduardo Ortiz present and offer commentary on “Einstein’s Unpublished Opening Lecture for His Course on Relativity Theory in Argentina, 1925.”

Historia Scientarum, Vol. 18, No. 2 features David Wittner, “Practice Makes Perfect: Foreign Knowledge and the Kamaishi Experiment;” and Kim Boumsoung, “Terrains of Practice: Geophysical Investigations in Japan in the 1880s.”

Perspectives on Science Vol. 16, No. 4 is a special issue on optics, and includes Fokko Jan Dijksterhuis, “Reading up on the Opticks: Refashioning Newton’s Theories of Light and Colors in Eighteenth-century Textbooks;” Sven Dupré, “Newton’s Telescope in Print: The Role of Images in the Reception of Newton’s Instrument;” John Gage, “Signs of Disharmony: Newton’s Opticks and the Artists;” Myles Jackson, “Putting the Subject back into Color: Accessibility in Goethe’s Zur Farbenlehre;” Kurt Møller Pedersen, “Leonhard Euler’s Wave Theory of Light;” and Alan Shapiro, “Twenty-Nine Years in the Making: Newton’s Opticks.” Vol. 17, No. 1 contains Kristian Camilleri, “Constructing the Myth of the Copenhagen Interpretation.”

Notes and Records of the Royal Society Vol. 62, No. 3 contains Milo Keynes, “Balancing Newton’s Mind: His Singular Behavior and His Madness of 1692–93;” while No. 4 contains Jean-Pierre Martin and Anita McConnell, “Joining the Observatories of Paris and Greenwich” about late eighteenth-century international astronomical collaboration.

Annals of Science, Vol. 66, No. 1 has N. M. Swerdlow, “The Lunar Theories of Tycho Brahe and Christian Longomontanus in Progymnasmata and Astronomia Danica.”

History of Science, Vol. 46, No. 3 includes Patrick Boner, “Life in the Liquid Fields: Kepler, Tycho, and Gilbert on the Nature of the Heavens and Earth;” while No. 4 includes Stephen Clucas, “Galileo, Bruno, and the Rhetoric of Dialogue in Seventeenth-Century Natural Philosophy;” and Hannah Gay, “Science, Scientific Careers, and Social Exchange in London: The Diary of Herbert McLeod, 1885–1900.”

Berichte zur Wissenschaftsgeschichte, Vol. 31, No. 3 features Matthias Rieger, “Unterscheidung und Synthese: Receptionsformen akustischer Forschung in der Musikliteratur des 19. Jahrhunderts;” Sebastian Klotz, “Tonpsychologie und Musikforschung als Katalysatoren wissenschaftlich-experimenteller Praxis und der Methodenlehre im Kreis von Carl Stumpf;” and Tobias Jung, “Albert Einstein: Revolutionär oder ‘Bewahrer des Alten’?” No. 4 is dedicated to the topic “The Cultural Alchemy of the Exact Sciences: Revisiting the Forman Thesis,” reflecting on the relationship between physics and its intellectual environment in Germany. It features the following articles in German: Helmuth Trischler, Cathryn Carson, and Alexei Kojevnikov, “Beyond Weimar Culture—Die Bedeutung der Forman-These für eine Wissenschaftsgeschichte in kulturhistorischer Perspektive;” Arne Schirrmacher, “Kosmos, Koralle, und Kultur-Milieu: Zur Bedeutung der populären Wissenschaftsvermittlung im späten Kaiserreich und in der Weimarer Republik;” and Stefan Wolff, “Die Konstituierung eines Netzwerkes reaktionärer Physiker in der Weimarer Republik.” It also features the following articles in English: Richard Staley, “The Fin de Siècle Thesis;” Suman Seth, “Mystik and Technik: Arnold Sommerfeld and Early-Weimar Quantum Theory;” and Richard Beyler, “Hostile Environmental Intellectuals? Critiques and Counter-Critiques of Science and Technology in West Germany after 1945.”

In the American Journal of Physics Vol. 77, No. 2, William Fedak and Jeffrey Prentis discuss “The 1925 Born and Jordan Paper ‘On Quantum Mechanics’.”

The Vol. 48, No. 8 issue of the CERN Courier is devoted to “The LHC: From Dream to Reality,” featuring articles looking back at the development of CERN’s Large Hadron Collider. In No. 10 Giovanni Battimelli and Luciano Maiani look back at the career of “Edoardo Amaldi: A True Statesman of Science;” and Cecilia Jarlskog reflects on “Rutherford’s Nobel Prize and the One He Didn’t Get.”

The October 2008 Physics Today features Lawrence Krauss reflecting on a spoof article he submitted to Physics Review Letters in the 1980s in “A Fifth Force Farce.” In the January 2009 issue, John David Jackson presents, “Panofsky Agonistes: The 1950 Loyalty Oath at Berkeley.” In the February 2009 issue William Carter and Merri Sue Carter discuss “Simon Newcomb, America’s First Great Astronomer.” The March 2009 issue has Daniel Kennefick, “Testing Relativity from the 1919 Eclipse—A Question of Bias.”

The September 11, 2009 Nature (Vol. 455, No. 7210) features François de Rose’s essay, “Meetings that Changed the World: Paris 1951: The Birth of CERN.” The February 26, 2009 issue (Vol. 457, No. 7233) looks back to a World War II-era paper in “In Retrospect: The Physics of Sand Dunes.”

In the September 2008 issue of Physics World, Ugo Amaldi remembers his father Edoardo in “Renaissance Man.” In the October 2008 issue, John Barrow charts the rise of popular science, focusing on Hawking’s A Brief History of Time, in “Pop Science’s Big Bang.” The January 2009 issue features Sidney Perkowitz’s “Castles in the Air,” recounting ideas for finding antigravity.

Journal for the History of Astronomy, Vol. 39, No. 3 includes Michael Nauenberg, “Edmund C. Stoner and the Discovery of the Maximum Mass of White Dwarfs;” Luís Miguel Carolino, “The Making of a Tychonic Cosmology: Cristoforo Borri and the Development of Tycho Brahe’s Astronomical System;” and Michael Hoskin’s review, “Nebulae, Star Clusters, and the Milky Way: From Galileo to William Herschel.” No. 4 includes Paolo Palmieri, “Galileus Deceptus, Non Minime Decepit: A Re-appraisal of a Counter-argument in Dialogo to the Extrusion Effect of a Rotating Earth;” Curtis Wilson, “The Nub of the Lunar Problem: From Euler to G. W. Hill;” Miguel Granada, “Kepler and Bruno on the Infinity of the Universe and of Solar Systems.”

The November 2008 Sky and Telescope has an article on the Mount Wilson 60-inch telescope by Tony Misch and Bill Sheehan called “Pioneering Telescope Turns 100.”

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