The Power of Stars
What are some of the connections that bind us to the stars? How have these connections been established? And how have people all around the world and throughout time reacted to the night sky, the sun and moon, in their poetry, mythology, rituals, and temples? This book explores the influence of the sky on both ancient and modern civilization, by providing a clear overview of the many ways in which humans have used the stars as an ordering principle in their cultures, and which today still inspire us intellectually, emotionally, and spiritually. The book explores constellation lore from around the world, celestial alignments of monuments and temples, both from ancient and modern civilizations, and the role the sky has played in the cultures of the Greek, Egyptian, Babylonian, Native American, Chinese, Mayan, Aztec, and Inca. Models of the universe from each of these cultures are described clearly, and each culture's explanation of the stars, planets, and other celestial objects are described. The roots of astronomy and astrology are presented with original imagery and reproductions of ancient manuscripts that portray the structure of the physical universe as conceived by a diverse array of human cultures over the centuries. Our own scientific Big Bang cosmology and the origin of stars and elements are discussed in a philosophical context, to explore how we as modern people learn about the Universe, and incorporate the findings of science into our world views. A concluding chapter provides a summary of modern science's effort to unlock the celestial secrets from the sky and from past civilizations, and what these answers mean for us today. Dr. Bryan Penprase received a B.S. in Physics and an M.S. in Applied Physics from Stanford University in 1985 and his Ph.D. in Astronomy and Astrophysics in 1992 from the University of Chicago. He served at both universities as both a Research and Teaching Assistant, was a Predoctoral Research Fellow at the Space Telescope Science Institute in Baltimore and an NRC Postdoctoral Researcher at IPAC/Caltech in Pasadena. Dr. Penprase has been a professor of Physics and Astronomy and Director of the Brackett Observatory at Pomona College since 1993. Dr. Penprase recently was awarded a Downing Exchange Award to become a visiting fellow at Downing College, Cambridge, in his work on quasar absorption lines. He also was a visiting scholar at the Harvard Smithsonian Astrophysical Observatory, and an ASEE/JPL Summer faculty fellow. Dr. Penprase recently has been conducting research at Caltech, the Carnegie Observatories, and JPL using the Las Campanas Observatory, the Keck Telescope and Hubble Space telescope, among other facilities. He has worked extensively in many areas of astrophysics, primarily in observational astronomy related to the interstellar medium and star formation. Dr. Penprase most recently has focused his observing efforts to include observations with the Pomona College 1-meter telesccope, and the Keck telescope in Hawaii. Dr. Penprase's research in astronomy and astrophysics has taken him around the world, to observe with telescopes such as the Australian AAT, the observatories of CTIO and ESO in Chile, Caltech's telescopes on Mauna Kea and at Palomar, and the Nordic Optical telescope in La Palma, Spain. He has given astronomy tours and talks since 1986 at the Yerkes Observatory, in Williams Bay Wisconsin, and public sky shows at the Adler Planetarium in Chicago, as well as a popular monthtly planetarium show in Claremont at the Millikan Planetarium of Pomona College.
Weiterlesen weniger lesen