By Ralph O'Connor

At the flip of the 19th century, geology—and its claims that the earth had a protracted and colourful prehuman history—was extensively dismissedasdangerous nonsense. yet simply fifty years later, it used to be the main celebrated of Victorian sciences. Ralph O’Connor tracks the marvelous development of geology’s status in Britain, exploring how a brand new geohistory way more captivating than the normal six days of construction used to be assembled and bought to the broader Bible-reading public.

Shrewd science-writers, O’Connor exhibits, advertised outstanding visions of previous worlds, piquing the general public mind's eye with glimpses of man-eating mammoths, conversing dinosaurs, and sea-dragons spawned by way of devil himself. those authors—including males of technology, ladies, priests, biblical literalists, hack writers, blackmailers, and prophets—borrowed freely from the Bible, smooth poetry, and the city leisure undefined, growing new kinds of literature with a view to delivery their readers right into a vanished and alien past.

In exploring using poetry and spectacle within the advertising of well known technology, O’Connor proves that geology’s good fortune owed a lot to the literary options of its authors. An leading edge mix of the background of technology, literary feedback, ebook background, and visible tradition, The Earth on Show rethinks the connection among technology and literature within the 19th century.

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The Earth on Show: Fossils and the Poetics of Popular Science, 1802-1856 by Ralph O'Connor

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