Entries by Laura J. Snyder

“Visions of Science” by James A. Secord

Published in the Wall Street Journal, Apr. 10, 2015 Science Books That Made Modernity Darwin’s radical ideas were accepted surprisingly quickly by an English public already steeped in science. Thomas De Quincey claimed that certain books existed only to teach their readers, while others changed the world by transforming and motivating them. The first he […]

“Revelatory” — Philip Ball, Nature

By Philip Ball. Published in Nature, Apr. 9, 2015 Science writer Philip Ball wrote a lovely essay for Nature connecting Eye of the Beholder with Galileo’s Telescope, another new book having to do with the use of optical instruments in the 17th century.  Ball writes “Snyder beautifully evokes the ambience of late-seventeenth-century Delft. . . . She is revelatory about Vermeer’s aims and […]

“Rich and Rewarding” — Graeme Wood, The American Scholar

By Graeme Wood. Published in The American Scholar, Mar. 4, 2015. Two Dutch Visionaries How the optical revolution revealed worlds large and small On September 17, 1683, the Dutch biologist Antoni van Leeuwenhoek wrote one of the most scientifically important, and completely revolting, letters that London’s Royal Society ever received. He informed his colleagues that […]

Review of Dry’s The Newton Papers

Published in the Wall Street Journal, May 23, 2014. A Reputation in Constant Motion It was claimed that Newton’s writings on alchemy and theology were products of mental derangement. In the 1940s, a visitor to the Sir Isaac Newton Library on the campus of the Babson Institute (now Babson College) in Wellesley, Mass., could find […]

Interview with Science for the People

Last month I chatted with Desiree Schell of the Science for the People syndicated radio show and podcast operating out of Edmonton, Alberta, and broadcasting throughout North America. It was fun to be immersed again in the nineteenth century for a while after working for the past couple of years on the seventeenth century. Talking […]

Happy New Year!

Happy New Year, from the midst of a Nantucket blizzard, where I am working on revisions to my new book! With luck it will appear in late 2014 or early 2015. Stay tuned! What a great way to start the new year: seeing that I landed on the 20 Most Popular Books of 2013 from […]

Interview with Science Book a Day

I recently sat for an interview (via Skype) with George Aranda of Science Book a Day, which featured The Philosophical Breakfast Club today. We chatted about PBC, my next book, how scientists can best communicate science to the general public, and what it was like to give a TED talk. You can view the interview […]

“Truly Remarkable” — Endeavour

I somehow managed to miss this wonderful review of The Philosophical Breakfast Club that appeared last year, in the British magazine Endeavour: “Snyder’s excellent book achieves the impossible. . . . All four of the main characters in her narrative are such dominant figures in the Victorian intellectual landscape that each of them would normally […]