Transformation of Science in Germany at the Beginning of the Nineteenth Century. Physics, Mathematics, Poetry, and Philosophy

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Many books have looked at early nineteenth century science through the lens of the whole of Europe. This book takes a solidly Germanic view of natural science, depicting a view of natural science. It dismantles the well-worn cliché of a speculative philosophy and an empirical natural science that began to move further and further away from each other, ultimately becoming irreconcilable. Such an interpretation of the physical-philosophical discourse into different disciplines imposes the dualistic viewpoint of our own time onto an era where erecting such categorical boundaries between knowledge areas was completely foreign. A discussion of physics in the early nineteenth century drew no distinction between itself and philosophy, which is the biggest contribution of this volume.


“The sequence in which this research is presented is convincing. The questions asked by ‘physicists’ around 1800 were questions asked in many other areas of society. They are not only questions about nature, but about mathematics, philosophy, and last but not least, poetry and literature. All contribute to the plethora of observations and arguments presented in this collection.”
Steffen Siegel,
University of Jena

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