ESSAYS ON SCIENCE AND SOCIETY

James Watt and the Lunaticks of Birmingham

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Science  06 Apr 2001:
Vol. 292, Issue 5514, pp. 55-56
DOI: 10.1126/science.1060460

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Summary

In his essay, TV presenter Hart-Davis tells the story of the Lunaticks, a group of intellectuals in the English Midlands who, around 1765, began to come together regularly to discuss science and technology. The group included James Watt, whose work on the steam engine the author describes as the outcome of inspiration, luck, and help from friends. The story of the Lunaticks shows that science and technology advance through intellectual exchange between people from all walks of life.

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