In this book, Brendan Dooley examines Italian scientific communications in early modern history. He demonstrates that Italian science between the age of Galileo and the age of Galvani and Volta underwent two revolutions. While the methodological innovations of the time have received copious attention, Dooley is concerned with the revolution in published communicatons, which has hardly been studied at all. What his innovative research shows, in sum, is that the accomplishments of Galvani and Volta were not based upon a cultural void, but rather a century and a half of fervid activity aiming to consolidate the accomplishments of Galileo, reinforce scientific institutions, establish observation and experiment as the dominant methodology, and improve science's public relations. This process challenged traditional institutional hierarchies of specialized knowledge and had far-reaching, interdisciplinary implications for the development of universities, the profession of university science researcher, the academies, and even state government.
Brendan Dooley is Associate Professor of History and Social Studies at Harvard University. He is the author of Italy in the Baroque: Selected Readings(1995), and Science, Politics, and Society in Eighteenth-Century Italy(1991).
Chapter 1 Introduction Chapter 2 The Crime of Galileo Chapter 3 The Business of the Occult Chapter 4 Printing Natural Knowledge Chapter 5 Nature and the Universities Chapter 6 Teaching and Learning Chapter 7 Saving the Jesuit's Skin Chapter 8 Science and the Public Sphere Chapter 9 Epilogue