By David E. Nye
After 1776, the previous American colonies started to reimagine themselves as a unified, self-created neighborhood. applied sciences had a massive function within the ensuing nationwide narratives, and some applied sciences assumed specific prominence. between those have been the awl, the mill, the canal, the railroad, and the irrigation dam. during this publication David Nye explores the tales that clustered round those applied sciences. In doing so, he rediscovers an American tale of origins, with the United States conceived as a moment production in-built concord with God's first construction. whereas mainstream american citizens developed technological beginning tales to provide an explanation for their position within the New international, even if, marginalized teams informed different tales of destruction and loss. local american citizens protested the lack of their forests, fishermen resisted the development of dams, and early environmentalists feared the exhaustion of assets. A water mill should be seen because the kernel of a brand new group or as a brand new technique to make the most hard work. If passengers comprehended railways as a part of a bigger narrative approximately American enlargement and development, many farmers attacked railroad land delivers. To discover those contradictions, Nye devotes alternating chapters to narratives of moment production and to narratives of these who rejected it. Nye attracts on renowned literature, speeches, ads, work, and lots of different media to create a heritage of yank beginning tales. He indicates how those tales have been revised periodically, as social and financial stipulations replaced, with no ever erasing the sooner tales fullyyt. just like the remoted frontier family members carving a dwelling house out of the wasteland with an awl persists to today, along later pictures and narratives. within the book's end, Nye considers the relation among those previous tales and such later American advancements because the conservation circulation, narratives of environmental restoration, and the idealization of barren region.
Read or Download America as Second Creation: Technology and Narratives of New Beginnings PDF
Best historiography books
This can be the 1st finished examine of what is still of the writings of Aristotle's pupil Eudemus of Rhodes at the historical past of the precise sciences. those fragments are an important to our knowing of the content material, shape, and target of the Peripatetic historiography of technology. the 1st a part of the publication provides an research of these tendencies in Presocratic, Sophistic and Platonic idea that contributed to the improvement of the background of technological know-how.
A vast standpoint on ancient concept and writing by way of one of many world's finest historiographers.
A few humans make photograph albums, acquire antiques, or stopover at ancient battlefields. Others continue diaries, plan annual kin gatherings, or sew jointly patchwork quilts in a convention discovered from grandparents. every one folks has methods of communing with the earlier, and our purposes for doing so are as different as our thoughts.
During this e-book, the prestigious historian Carl Schorske--author of the Pulitzer Prize-winning Fin-de-Siécle Vienna--draws jointly a sequence of essays that display the altering position of heritage in nineteenth-and twentieth-century cultures. In such a lot highbrow and inventive fields, Schorske argues, twentieth-century Europeans and americans have come to do their pondering with no background.
- Recording Oral History: A Guide for the Humanities and Social Sciences
- The Killing of History: How Literary Critics and Social Theorists Are Murdering Our Past
- Herbert Butterfield
- Contesting the Renaissance (Contesting the Past)
- Perils of Pankratova: some stories from the annals of Soviet historiography
Extra resources for America as Second Creation: Technology and Narratives of New Beginnings
21 He then asked what were the causes of this progress, and concluded: “The successful application of science to art increases the productive power and agency of the human race. ”22 For Webster, “this mighty agency, this automatic labor whose ability cannot be limited nor bounded” produced general prosperity. Etzler had imagined sudden transformation; Webster described a more gradual development. His narrative is the characteristic American story: change is rapid but piecemeal, ameliorative, and beneficial to all.
Such true utopias shade off into the speculative designs of real estate agents, town planners, stockbrokers, and promoters of new inventions, all of whom traffic in visions of transformation. The foundation story proper is distinct from the utopian narrative in that it purports to describe changes that have already taken place rather than to project possibilities, and also in that these changes are gradual even if they break decisively with the past. The foundation narrative describes an evolutionary process in which new technologies increase the wealth and abundance available to the average person.
Lincoln reminded them that the “iron horse” was “panting and impatient” to do their bidding, and that the telegraph was “ready . . to take and bring . . ”30 In colonial America, transportation and communication were more difficult, and most people believed in a quite different idea when it came to buying and selling: the idea of the just price. This idea originated with Thomas Aquinas and was widely accepted in the medieval period. 31 The just price was appropriate to a world of limited and uncertain production, a world where reliance on nothing more than supply and demand resulted in enormous price swings and inequities.