The Science of Liberty
Democracy, Reason, and the Laws of Nature
By Timothy Ferris
Harper Perennial, Paperback, 9780060781514, 368pp.
Publication Date: February 2011
List Price: $15.99*
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In his most powerful book to date, award-winning author TimothyFerris makes a passionate case for scienceas the inspiration behind the rise of liberalismand democracy. Ferris showshow science was integral to the AmericanRevolution but misinterpreted inthe French Revolution; reflects on thehistory of liberalism, stressing its widelyunderestimated and mutually beneficialrelationship with science; and surveysthe forces that have opposed scienceand liberalism from communism andfascism to postmodernism and Islamicfundamentalism. A sweeping intellectualhistory, The Science of Liberty is a stunninglyoriginal work that transcends theantiquated concepts of left and right.
“Unfashionably optimistic. . . . Ferris provides irrefutable evidence that, despite the tragedies of war and terrorism, there has been astounding progress in both the living standards and the degree of personal freedom enjoyed by the majority of the human race.”
-The Financial Times
“Lucid and captivating. . . . Deeply important. . . . Ferris’s clear and educative account makes for an enjoyable read.”
-A. C. Grayling, The New Scientist
“Engaging. . . . Ambitious. . . . Ferris usefully reminds us that science was an integral part of the intellectual equipment of the great pioneers of political and individual liberty.”
-The New York Times Book Review
“An important and extremely readable book. . . . Lively. . . . Clear and perceptive. . . . Ferris is one of America’s most skillful communicators about science. . . . He shows himself a fascinating historian too.”
-The San Francisco Chronicle
“An important, timely, and splendidly written book. . . . Ferris is among the half-dozen foremost explicators of the physical sciences alive today. . . . The Science of Liberty is a profound delight.”
-The Washington Post