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Archetypes and Ancestors: Palaeontology in Victorian London, 1850-1875
by Adrian Desmond
University of Chicago Press, 1982
Cloth: 978-0-226-14343-9 | Paper: 978-0-226-14344-6
Library of Congress Classification QE705.G7D47 1984
Dewey Decimal Classification 560.9421

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ABOUT THIS BOOK
"The social construction of scientific knowledge, clearly one of the most exciting trends in the history of science in the 1890's, has made a solid stride forward with the publication of Archetypes and Ancestors. . . . Adrian Desmond set out to determine how much light might be shed on the mid-Victorian controversies over fossil reconstruction by an investigation of the ideological commitments and political programs of London paleontologists. The answer is: a great deal of light. The resulting book is thoroughly fascinating."—Philip Rehbock, American Historical Review

"A sophisticated study of the colonization of scientific territory—specifically of rival attempts to design the dinosaur—and of the constructive (not just obstructive) role of social pressures in the making of 'lasting contributions' to science. Not least it is a joy to read, perkily irreverent at times and full of nice vignettes and memorable turns of phrase."—Roy Porter, Times Higher Education Supplement


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