This book is an interdisciplinary review of the effect of fracture on life, following the development of the understanding of fracture written from a historical perspective. After a short introduction to fracture, the first section of the book covers the effects of fracture on the evolution of the Earth, plants and animals, and man. The second section of the book covers the largely empirical control of fracture from ancient times to the end of the nineteenth century. The final section reviews the development of fracture theory as a discipline and its application during the twentieth century through to the present time.
Introduction and Basic Solid Mechanics; Evolution of the Earth; Evolution of Life; Human Evolution and Stone Tools; Building in Stone and Concrete in the Ancient World; From the Renaissance to the Industrial Revolution; From the Industrial Revolution to 1900; The First Half of the Twentieth-Century; Fundamentals of Fracture and Metal Fracture from 1950 to the Present; The Diversity of Materials and Their Fracture Behaviour; Cutting and Piercing; Recent Developments and the Twenty-First Century.