The Age of Wonder

Tuesday, March 09, 2010

Richard Holmes tells the history of the men and women whose discoveries and inventions at the end of the 18th century gave birth to the Romantic Age of Science. In The Age of Wonder: How the Romantic Generation Discovered the Beauty and Terror of Science, he looks at the great scientific discoveries of the age of exploration, and how it extended to great writers and poets as well as scientists.

Event: Richard Holmes will be in conversation with Paul Holdengraber
Wednesday, March 10, at 7:00 pm
Stephen A. Schwarzman Building, South Court Auditorium
More information and tickets here here.


Richard Holmes

Comments [7]

Judith Anderson from NJ

Terrific interview...I learned something about the link between science and art. My only question: Where do you send a college student who wants to explore this link and is good at art and science? I wanted to hear his answer to this question! We need more cross-field educational opportunties like. The value is in the intersection between fields.

Mar. 11 2010 06:34 PM
Gregory from NYC

The guest was engaging and made the topic interesting.
I must read his book.

Mar. 09 2010 08:03 PM
Ro from SoHo from NYC

What a fabulous conversation! I am thrilled to have been present at this wonderful, informative exchange. Congratulations Mr. Lopate. One of your best!

Mar. 09 2010 02:01 PM
Mike C. from Tribeca

Another fascinating interview. I just put a hold on the book at the NY Public Library website, as did four others at the same time.

Mar. 09 2010 01:43 PM
Hugh Sansom from Brooklyn NY

What role did an openness to amateurs play?

I'm thinking John Harrison, who invented the timepiece that solved the problem of measuring longitude. He was opposed for years by the Royal Society (I think) until he directly enlisted the aid of King George III (who had established a prize to encourage a solution to the longitude problem).

Mar. 09 2010 01:41 PM
Hugh Sansom from Brooklyn NY

I was thinking of Mary Anning.

What a time! Just some of the people who come to mind: Darwin, Wollstonecraft, Madame de Pompadour (a few decades earlier), Marie-Anne Pierrette Paulze (wife of Lavoisier), William Buckland....

Mar. 09 2010 01:26 PM
Hugh Sansom from Brooklyn NY

1. Was Mr. Holmes at the University of East Anglia for a while? Does he have any thoughts on the recent dust-up over stolen emails on climate change?

2. More interesting (I hope): It seems like there may be a mild resurgence of interest in the ties, links between science and art (poetry, etc.) in the past, particularly in the 18th Century and into the 19th.

Mary Wollstonecraft Shelley might be an example.

And I think that Mr. Lopate may recently have interviewed a writer who examines an early 19th Century natural scientist -- a woman now largely underappreciated -- who was a key figure in early, major fossil discoveries, especially on the southern coast of Britian.

Mar. 09 2010 01:14 PM

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