19: Interdisciplinary Studies in the Long Nineteenth Century, No 11 (2010)

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Field Studies: Novels as Darwinian Niches, Poetry for Physicists and Mathematicians

Daniel Walter Brown


This brief forum contribution reflects upon some historical factors in the formation of nineteenth century science and of the literature and science discipline that has since arisen to study its literary receptions. Noting the preponderance of studies focusing upon forms of scientific developmentalism, principally Darwinian biology, and of novels and other prose, and more broadly, on literary figures, rather than the writings of scientists, the paper introduces some poetry on science by scientists. It concentrates principally on those working and writing in the fields of physics and mathematics, areas that have been neglected in literature and science studies.

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