The Earth on Show: Fossils and the Poetics of Popular by Ralph O'Connor PDF

By Ralph O'Connor

At the flip of the 19th century, geology—and its claims that the earth had an extended and colourful prehuman history—was generally dismissedasdangerous nonsense. yet simply fifty years later, it used to be the main celebrated of Victorian sciences. Ralph O’Connor tracks the superb progress of geology’s status in Britain, exploring how a brand new geohistory way more beautiful than the traditional six days of construction used to be assembled and bought to the broader Bible-reading public.

Shrewd science-writers, O’Connor exhibits, advertised extraordinary visions of earlier worlds, piquing the general public mind's eye with glimpses of man-eating mammoths, speaking dinosaurs, and sea-dragons spawned by way of devil himself. those authors—including males of technological know-how, girls, priests, biblical literalists, hack writers, blackmailers, and prophets—borrowed freely from the Bible, smooth poetry, and the city leisure undefined, growing new kinds of literature to be able to delivery their readers right into a vanished and alien past.

In exploring using poetry and spectacle within the advertising of renowned technological know-how, O’Connor proves that geology’s good fortune owed a lot to the literary options of its authors. An leading edge mix of the heritage of technology, literary feedback, publication heritage, and visible tradition, The Earth on Show rethinks the connection among technological know-how and literature within the 19th century.

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The Earth on Show: Fossils and the Poetics of Popular Science, 1802-1856 by Ralph O'Connor

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