Made In Britain
By Evan Davis
What are countries famous for making? For Japan, the answer might be electronic goods. For Germany, automobiles. For France, perhaps a Louis Vuitton bag. But what about Britain?Here, Evan Davis sets himself the task of finding out. Offering a fascinating look at our manufacturing industries and revealing the various companies that might not be household names, but are very much world leaders in their fields, he shows how we have learnt to specialise in high end and niche areas that are the envy of the world. Taking in our disappointments and successes, Made in Britain is a brilliantly readable tour of our economic history, exploring the curious blend of resilience, innovation and economic free-thinking that makes us who we are.
By Marc Hauser
Scholars have long argued that moral judgements arise from rational deliberations about what society determines is right and wrong. This has generated the idea that our moral psychology is founded on cultural experience. In the revolutionary MORAL MINDS, Marc Hauser challenges these concepts, showing that this view is illusory and arguing instead that humans have evolved a 'moral instinct', a universal feature of the human mind rather than one informed by gender, education or religion.Combining his own cutting-edge research with cognitive psychology, linguistics, evolutionary biology and economics, Hauser examines his groundbreaking theory in terms of bioethics, religion and law, as well as our everyday lives.
The Measure Of All Things
By Ken Alder
THE MEASURE OF ALL THINGS tells the story of how science, revolutionary politics, and the dream of a new economy converged to produce both the metric system and the first struggle over globalization. Amidst the scientific fervor of the Revolution two French scientists, Delambre and Mechain, were sent out on an expedition to measure the shape of the world and thereby establish the metre (which was to be one ten-millionth the distance from pole to equator). Their hope was that people would use the globe as the basis of measure rather than an arbitrary system meted out by the monarchs. As one scientist went north along the French meridian and the other south, their experiences diverged just as radically. After seven years, they received a hero's welcome upon their return to Paris. Mechain, however, was obsessed over a minute error in his calculations that he'd discovered and concealed, and which eventually drove him to his grave. His death forced his colleague Delambre to choose between loyalty to his friend and his science.
The Music Of The Spheres
By Jamie James
From the 5th century BC, when Pythagoras first composed his laws of Western music and science, until the flowering of Romanticism over 2000 years later, scientists and philosophers perceived the cosmos musically, as an ordered mechanism whose smooth operation created a celestial harmony - the music of the spheres. The separation of science and music began with the scientific revolution during the Renaissance, and reached a peak with Romanticism, which celebrated what was human, individual and local. 20th-century science and music, argues Jamie James in this book, have rejected the Romantic ideal and placed the ultimate focus outside the reach of human reason once again. The book provides a survey of the history of science and music, a reassessment of Romanticism and the modernist reaction to it, and a radical intellectual journey.
The Man Who Knew Infinity
By Robert Kanigel
The Man Who Knew Infinity is the true story of a friendship between Srinivasa Ramanujan and G.H. Hardy that forever changed mathematics. In 1913, a young unschooled Indian clerk wrote a letter to G H Hardy, begging the pre-eminent English mathematician's opinion on several ideas he had about numbers. Realising the letter was the work of a genius, Hardy arranged for Srinivasa Ramanujan to come to England. Thus began one of the most improbable and productive collaborations ever chronicled.With a passion for rich and evocative detail, Robert Kanigel takes us from the temples and slums of Madras to the courts and chapels of Cambridge University, where the devout Hindu Ramanujan, 'the Prince of Intuition,' tested his brilliant theories alongside the sophisticated and eccentric Hardy, 'the Apostle of Proof'. In time, Ramanujan's creative intensity took its toll: he died at the age of thirty-two and left behind a magical and inspired legacy that is still being plumbed for its secrets today.Adapted into a film in 2016 starring Dev Patel, Jeremy Irons, Stephen Fry, Toby Jones and Devika Bhise.