By David C. Cassidy
Because the 20th century drew to an in depth, desktops, the web, and nanotechnology have been relevant to trendy American lifestyles. but the advances in physics underlying those functions are poorly understood and extensively underappreciated through U.S. electorate at the present time. during this concise review, David C. Cassidy sharpens our viewpoint on glossy physics through viewing this foundational technological know-how during the lens of America’s engagement with the political occasions of a tumultuous century.American physics first stirred within the 1890s—around the time x-rays and radioactivity have been found in Germany—with the founding of graduate faculties at the German version. but American examine lagged in the back of the nice ecu laboratories till powerful household rules, including the exodus of physicists from fascist international locations, introduced the state into the 1st ranks of worldwide examine within the Thirties. The production of the atomic bomb and radar in the course of international battle II ensured lavish executive aid for particle physics, besides computation, solid-state physics, and armed forces verbal exchange. those advances facilitated house exploration and ended in the worldwide growth of the Internet.Well into the Sixties, physicists strengthened the us’ overseas prestige, and the kingdom repaid the desire via great outlays of federal, army, and philanthropic investment. yet progressively the United States relinquished its postwar dedication to medical management, and the state discovered itself suffering to keep up a aggressive aspect in technological know-how schooling and examine. this day, American physicists, depending totally on commercial investment, needs to compete with smaller, scrappier international locations cause on writing their very own short historical past of physics within the twenty-first century.
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Extra resources for A Short History of Physics in the American Century
Why were women scientists overall more likely than men scientists to hold doctorates throughout this period? ” Many women perceived that to be accepted as equal to men “in a man’s occupation” they had to be demonstrably better than men, much as was Madame Curie, the recipient of two Nobel Prizes (for physics and chemistry). And, like Madame Curie, who had to overcome incredible discrimination and other obstacles, many women believed they had to face the discriminatory world of science with a stoic acceptance in the hope that, if they could survive, they would ease the path for those who came after them.
42 In parallel with immigration quotas, colleges and universities began to impose quotas on the admission of Jewish students. For reasons of tradition and discrimination, the fi rst-generation of the newly immigrated Jewish families were the most academically mobile of any ethnic group. Nearly two-thirds of Jewish young people went on to college. Some universities feared being “overrun” by Jewish students. ” 43 Many universities, especially the elite research universities that were bringing American science to international competitive status, regarded themselves as guardians of professional quality and as gateways to professional careers.
0 percent). 45 The largest Jewish population was in New York City, and its colleges and universities enrolled the largest numbers of Jewish students. In 1919 Columbia and New York universities became the first of a group of universities concerned about Jewish enrollments to introduce special testing to identify and reduce the number of Jewish admissions. During the next three years, Jewish enrollment in the freshman year at Columbia dropped from about 33 percent to 20 percent. The Jewish representation stayed at about that level for the rest of the decade, dropping further during the 1930s to only about 15 percent in 1934–1935.
A Short History of Physics in the American Century by David C. Cassidy