Developments and advances across the globe especially in science are referred to as scientific revolutions. The scientific revolutions have been occurring since the 18th century as is was written in 1747 that Isaac Newton had created a revolution by Clairaut. Consequently, the word revolution was used as the preface to Lavoisier’s 1789 work that was announcing discovery of oxygen. These works prompted new discoveries to elicit excitement among the inventors and members of the public as they acknowledged the innovations were bound to change the society positively. Several research studies have claimed that, scientific revolution has attribute to natural and artificial changes experienced across global communities. The researchers however differ on various aspects and notions in regard to scientific revolution. For example, some researchers believe scientific revolution originated in Europe. These researchers also claim future scientific revolutions can only originate in Europe before spreading to other areas in the world. Conversely, some researchers claim some scientific revolutions developed as scientists were competing to fulfill their curious interests. They claim this led to disputed discoveries prompting modern science to avoid relying on personal needs and interests as they continue to sustain scientific revolution. This research report will therefore focus on various notions authored by diverse researchers seeking to discuss scientific revolution.
According to Lagerkvist, scientific revolution took place between 1400 and 1700 A.D. The revolution led to formation of conceptual, institutional, and methodological approaches to the natural world that are currently recognized in similar capacity like modern science. This however should not translate to scientific revolution only in the field of science as changes in thoughts and practices were also witnessed prompting modern science to be discovered. According to Lagerkvist, scientific revolution took place only in Europe. The process was complex and multifaceted as it amalgamated natural philosophy with various subordinate sciences. These sciences include mathematics, optics, astronomy, geography, and other separate traditions like natural magic and alchemy. Scientists eventually recognized they had the power to identify alternatives revealing truths about the physical society. This discovery was increasingly incorporated in natural philosophies to inevitably introduce diverse methods and processes complementing and refining earlier rationalism (Lagerkvist, 2005).
Lagerkvist also believes scientific revolution did not occur in any other area across the world other than Europe. As a result, he argues that scientific revolution during ancient times eventually grew as people had to cope with the challenges they experienced in life in those periods. He also believes that, a certain amount of technological knowledge exists in every human society. For example, he claims ancient technology was imprecise and qualitative. The technology however grew and advanced to accomplish various significant developments as scientists continued to ensure they model ancient technologies in line with modernization. Throughout his work, he enumerates the significant developments in science and how the work got accomplished. Scientific revolution should therefore be regarded as a historical phenomenon directly related other processes either discovering or enhancing self-consciousness among people striving to change the world. It should also be acknowledged that, the earth is not stationary at the center of the universe as it revolves around the sun. As a result, revolutionary consequences should not be denied. More so, philosophers and sociologists of science are still striving to understand the nature of scientific innovations and advancements which is inspiring new models (Lagerkvist, 2005).
Consequently, Applebaum asserts that major transformations occurred in Europe between 16th and 17th centuries leading to inventions allied to in astronomy, physics, mathematics and biology. Applebaum therefore supports Lagerkvist’s claims that scientific revolution commenced between 1400 and 1700 A.D. He also asserts that, the scientific revolutions witnessed mainly originated from Europe. He claims the revolutions led to changes influencing various modifications and transformations that caused world views with regard to God and His creation to change. As a result, he commenced to conduct research studies focusing on early scientists. The early scientists he has focused on include Newton, Boyle, Galileo, and Copernicus among others. Based on his works titled ‘The Scientific Revolution and the Foundations of Modern Science, he claims that various scientists played a role in building up the revolution in areas of electrification and other unimaginable sources of energy. For example, in regard to Middleton Applebaum perceives energy sources like geothermal and atomic have changed the face of the world. He therefore believes that the current notions in science can trace their origins from gifted scientists who mainly located in Europe. As a result, global developments, innovations, and inventions ought to be attributed to science (Applebaum, 2005).
Bailey focusing on Thomas Kuhn argues to determine the structures of the scientific revolution. For example, Bailey discusses different faces of science claiming they are perceived as normal promptly most people to understand them. The author also strives to affirm that, the revolution in science is based on four historical dimensions. The four historical dimensions are namely epigenetic, genetic, behavioral and symbolic. Epigenetic refer to heritable changes in the gene expression. The genetic expression however does not involve modifications to the underlying DNA sequence as phenotype can be modified without affecting the genotype. Consequently, the process of cells reading genes is affected. Epigenetic changes are therefore regular and natural occurrences. They can however be influenced by several factors such as age, diseases, lifestyles, and the environment. Epigenetic changes are manifested as common manners in which cells terminally differentiate before transforming into liver, brain, and skin cells. Epigenetic changes can also have damaging effects resulting in diseases including cancer. Current and ongoing research seeks to uncover the role played by epigenetic in regard to diverse human disorders and fatal illnesses (Bailey, 2005).
All cells in the body with nucleus have similar complete set of genes made of (deoxyribonucleic) DNA to form a type of genetic instruction. Genetics are used in making molecules and controlling chemical reactions of life. Genes are passed from the parents to the children through inheritance. Some genes can therefore be active in some body tissues and organs than others making the difference between liver and lung cells. Genetics have been turned on and off during development. They also respond diversely to environmental changes in line with infections and metabolism. The author therefore lists genetics based on the notion that, they enable the study of heredity as a biological process through which parents pass genes to their children. The genetic heredity can be physical such as the texture of hair, skin and eye colors. The heredity however can also be in form of a disease or disorder (Bailey, 2005).
The behavioral and symbolic historical dimensions of science are based on the mechanisms leading to production of selected pressures on DNA-based inheritance. The author asserts that, the four dimensions have helped in DNA changes directly to sustain the evolving evolution. The author affirms that, through thoughts, dialogue, and experiments control systems causing evolutionary changes and mechanisms underlying inheritance through epigenetic and genetics have led to scientific changes reorganizing the world at large. With skeptical enquirer, the author’s discussion of the four historical dimensions of science is to acknowledge that revolution does not take part in just a particular aspect as it affects other parts of life (Bailey 2005).
Bailey also reports that, scientists differed in scientific matters that concerned their areas of research. For example, he quotes the dispute between Isaac Newton and Flamsteed as they tried to understand more about comets that had been seen. Bailey therefore admits that, most of the things discovered by scientists ought to be attributed to the fact that the scientists were curious and interested. This is because they relied on science to discover new inventions to fulfill their curious minds or interests. As a result, Bailey does not believe scientific inventions and discoveries were either made or identified by scientists who were genius. Bailey’s claims can be supported by Moore. Moore asserts that, revolution in science is based on the talented people in different areas. For example, Moore claims scientists differed in scientific matters that concerned their areas of research. Moore’s claims also retell the dispute between Isaac Newton and Flamsteed as they tried to understand more about comets that had been seen. He claims that, most scientists including Isaac Newton were argumentative, cantankerous, self-opinionated, and unforgiving. They always strived to pursue their interests to fulfill their personal curiosity (Moore, 2005).
As a result, they often engaged in activities ruining their competitors’’ reputations and careers especially among contemporary natural philosophers. Isaac Newton would therefore also target Robert Hooke and Gottfied Wilhelm Von Leibniz with the hope that they would make erroneous discoveries. For example, David and Stephen Clarke made highly erroneous claims in regard to Newton’s persecution of early pioneer in electrical research. Moore claims these examples should prove that most of the things that scientists discovered were out of interest and curiosity. This has also been observed in modern times. For example, NASA’s Mars rover Curiosity exploring the Red Planet has accomplished a lot. For instance, it determined the Gale Crater landing site could have supported microbial life in ancient past. This scientific discovery was however achieved to satisfy NASA’s interests and curiosity (Moore, 2005).
Scientific revolutions in the past were also driven by personal interests and curiosity to identify tangible scientific solutions solving society’s problems. As a result, Moore believes scientists should invest in basic curious-driven research studies that are not motivated by potential for practical applications. This will encourage modern societies to choose how to spend budgets to undertake research studies likely to produce practical findings resulting to immediate global changes without incurring federal costs. Scientists however, ought to be controlled as pursuing personal oriented endeavors can result to untruthful discoveries which cannot derive quality decisions serving the national interest (Moore, 2005).
Moran’s study focuses on the controversy that might have been there between human life and the scientific revolution. Scientists have commenced examining the structures and actions of living bodies. They however did not rely on physic-mechanical and chymical experiments. Instead, they relied on geometric-mechanical principles leading them to discover that, an infinite number of things were unknown to former ages in regard to the human body and natural actions. They concluded the discovery was a complex of chymical-mechanical motions depending that were purely mathematical which could not explain the phenomena of natural things. Solid parts of the human body were therefore regarded as either vessels or membranous pipes with fluids and solid fibres formed and connected to each other with particular actions to perform. As mechanists sought to apply mathematical and geometrical principles to the human body however, mechanical approaches were either inadequate or lacking proportion. For example, the approaches could not explain the pumping action of the heart. The controversy therefore rose based on the fact that, scientific revolution did not seem concerned with the human body as the approaches applied could not even understand the status of senses in human beings. it therefore asserted scientific revolution focuses on life sciences without the need to match big controversies in physic-mechanical sciences (Moran, 2005).
Moran therefore claims that there were problems that came with scientific advancement. For example, some scientists sought to discover other ideas demonstrating that the revolution had nothing to do with life. The study came up with the development of Biology as a subject that studied the human body. The subject had to emphasize animals and plants develop under various conditions. This source is a valuable summary on how Biology influences our life. It shows the direct connection of our bodies to the science. Moran’s sentiments therefore prove controversies have also hindered scientific revolution to apply medicine as an art more than science. This is because conflicts between the old and the new in physiology and medicine due to disputes arising from mechanism, vitalism, and animism. This is because living entities in either explanatory or ontological terms should proclaim how they eliminate life unpredictably (Moran, 2005).
Bell as an author focusing on scientific discoveries dwells on arguments caused by changes in business that have been inspired by scientific revolution. Bell believes these arguments encouraged other scientists to come up with other ideas showing that the revolution had nothing to do with life. Bell’s research study has resulted in development of modes of communication to human beings. For example, his study puts emphasis on how communication developed under various conditions. This study is vital as it helps readers, researchers, and scientists to understand more about the problems that have been caused by the technology in modern society and how the science tries to solve them. For example, it is claimed laboratories were introduced in the late 1800s changing the goals of high school education. These changes have ensured the current high school science education provides scientific literacy in order to liberate and prepare students as they study and work. Educators and researchers however continue to disagree on various scientific definitions. Bell therefore believes a scientific inventions invented terminologies used to narrate and communicate circumstances revolving around modern science and chemistry as considerable social connections (Bell, 2005).
Randolph also asserts that, there are global changes that have been attributed to the field encouraging communication and technology in media. Randolph however also notes that, the communications and technologies were discovered through scientific discovery. This is because telecommunication instruments were invented in the 18th century. More so, they played a critical role during invention of modern science. For example, scientists in the 1950s commenced use of several of tools determining the chemical components in unknown substances. The instruments that were being used enabled discrimination of chemicals based on their physical properties. These mathematical transformations invented in the telecommunications field led to development of companies dealing with making of scientific instruments. The companies continue to pursue developments as innovations across the telecommunications field are continuous. The changes are vital as they help in the use of devices assisting broadly throughout the development of natural sciences. Instrumentation should therefore be identified as critical in the scientific revolution (Randolph, 2005).
Chapman and the Institute of Physics focusing on the contributions made by various scientists in the revolution of science strive to create divisions as per the work done by different researchers in diverse fields. These fields include Geology, Astronomy, and Engineering among others. The authors assert that, science revolution does not necessarily need to follow a given pattern. This therefore indicates there is a room for economic and religious motives prompting the modern science to differ from the past. For example, the modern science utilizes tentative hypothecation and speculations contrary to the past. As a result, Chapman believes scientific revolution took place in Europe. For example, he claims developments in physics, mathematics, biology and astronomy originated in Europe before they transformed views of the society and nature towards the end of Renaissance period. He also claims most of the advanced technologies in the world will still come from Europe. This is because the scientific revolution after beginning in Europe continued through the late 18th century and continues to influence intellectual social movements seeking to enlighten global communities (Chapman, & IoP, 2005).
Chapman also asserts that, Newton created revolution and the word used in the preface to Lavoisier’s 1789 works during which oxygen was discovered. This paved way for more scientific revolutionary discoveries that can be described as exciting to be noticed. More so, majority of the new views would emerge to replace Greek views which had been dominating science for at least two thousand years. These notions about scientific revolutions being continuous and originating from Europe are critical in helping readers to understand that, the revolution did not stop at once. As a result, readers should acknowledge scientific revolution is continuous seeking to advance diverse fields influencing lives and lifestyles across the globe. Consequently, the can acknowledge science is still striving to become an autonomous discipline distinct from technology and philosophy achieving beyond utilitarian goals (Chapman, & IoP, 2005).
Hodgkin presents the history of mathematics and their implications in western and eastern civilization. He argues that, mathematics ought to be respected and regarded as part of other sciences. This is because science and the literal life do not have a point of connection as they disagree in almost all aspects. Hodgkin therefore argues that, a scientific world has a future. As a result, persons leading traditional lives should acknowledge they live under the assumption that the future does not exist. For example, Hodgkin focuses on people who are either literate or illiterate with views differing on various aspects of life. He asserts that, their diverse and dissimilar views are due to the people applying unique critical thinking skills depending on every individual’s ability. These different views however, have been giving the society both critical and scientific scholars. As a result, human life should be regarded as a dynamic prone to changes. Modern and traditional people should therefore acknowledge that, their traditions and customs can neither stop nor slow down change (Hodgkin, 2005).
The United States National Academies focuses on one of the scientists known as Francis Bacon as he had an impact in science revolution. Francis Bacon is described as a scientist who was often focusing on nature as he had no much regards with the science. He therefore developed the belief that, scientific revolution was used to make changes that would happen naturally. This is because the changes would have taken a longer period of time. The issue of scientific knowledge changing the nature is the main reason the author talks of a death of nature. In order to ascertain the symbolic historical dimension of scientific dimension, Bacon discussed the diminishing history, social relations and culture. Death, diseases, and disorders should therefore be taken as part of the symbolic historical dimension sustaining scientific revolution (USNA, 2006).
The National Academies also discuss women through use of figurative explanations in discussing revolution and death. Both genders are referenced to indicate that, as much as women are used and denied equal rights and opportunities as their male counterparts, scientific revolution does not facilitate equality. For example, the relationship between women and nature determines how they are treated in the society by their colleagues and male counterparts. Consequently, it should be asserted that scientific revolution does not pursue perfection or equality. Instead, it strives to change the global society without striving to identify measures to apply in order to achieve gender equality as it focuses on socio-economic changes. Global societies should therefore rely on scientific and genomic revolution to ensure human beings lead longer lives. They should however pursue discoveries ensuring human beings do not suffer from infectious diseases. More discoveries encouraging human beings to work as a team irrespective of gender differences should also be invented and applied to achieve fairly balanced changes across global communities (USNA, 2006).
The notions discussed above by diverse authors in regard to scientific revolution reveal the following. Foremost, scientific revolution commenced between the 17th and 18th centuries. It should also be noted that, various historical scientists attributing to scientific revolution were pursuing to discover and answer questions they had in regard to various aspects influencing how the societies were thriving. For example, some scientists discovered inventions allied to either science or medicine as they were curious how human body and living entities were connected to nature. Ultimately, scientific revolution should be identified as a notion that continues to explain how people and societies are connected. Scientific revolution can also be identified as a mechanism striving to change people and societies in order to address various risks they face including diseases and gender inequalities. Science should therefore be respected as an autonomous discipline seeking to ensure traditional and modern progresses achieve positive changes in diverse areas. These areas include medicine, philosophy, psychology, industrial, and technological as it ensures new inventions assist people and communities lead more comfortable and quality lives.
Applebaum, W. (2005). The Scientific Revolution and the Foundations of Modern Science. Westport, CT: Greenwood Press.
Bailey, R. (2005). Liberation Biology: The Scientific and Moral Case for the Biotech Revolution. Amherst, NY: Prometheus Books.
Bell, M. S. (2005). Lavoisier in the Year One: The Birth of a New Science in an Age of Revolution. New York: W.W. Norton.
Chapman, A., & Institute of Physics (IoP). (2005). England’s Leonardo: Robert Hooke and the Seventeenth-Century Scientific Revolution. Great Britain, Bristol: Institute of Physics Pub.
Hodgkin, L. H. (2005). A History of Mathematics: From Mesopotamia to Modernity. Oxford: Oxford University Press.
Lagerkvist, U. (2005). The Enigma of Ferment: From the Philosopher’s Stone to the First Biochemical Nobel Prize. Hackensack, NJ: World Scientific.
Moore, T. G. (2005). School for Genius: The Story of the ETH — The Swiss Federal Institute of Technology, from 1855 to the Present. Rockville Centre, NY: Front Street.
Moran, B. T. (2005). Distilling Knowledge: Alchemy, Chemistry, and the Scientific Revolution. Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press.
Randolph, J. (2005). The Scientific Revolution. Educational Audio Visual, Inc, CLEARVUE/eat (Firm), Society for Visual Education, OverDrive, & Inc. Chicago: CLEARVUE & SVE.
United States National Academies (USNA). (2006). The Genomic Revolution: Implications for Treatment and Control of Infectious Disease: Working Group Summaries. Washington, DC: National Academies Press.