John Herschel's Cape Voyage: Private Science, Public Imagination, and the Ambitions of Empire

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Ashgate, 2004 - Biography & Autobiography - 229 pages
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In John Herschel's Cape Voyage Steven Ruskin demonstrates that the reason for Herschel's widespread cultural renown was the popular notion that his voyage to the Cape was not simply an objective scientific expedition, but was a project closely aligned with the imperial ambitions of the British government.In 1833 Herschel sailed from London to Cape Town, southern Africa, to undertake an astronomical exploration of the southern heavens, as well as a terrestrial exploration of the area around Cape Town. As a result of his voyage, after his return to England in 1838 he was highly esteemed and became Britain's most recognized man of science.In this new examination of Herschel's voyage, Ruskin reaches a better understanding of the relationship of scientific practice to the broader aspects of imperial culture and politics in the nineteenth century.

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