Seize the Daylight
The Curious and Contentious Story of Daylight Saving Time
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Benjamin Franklin conceived of it. Sir Arthur Conan Doyle endorsed it. Winston Churchill campaigned for it. Kaiser Wilhelm first employed it. Woodrow Wilson and Franklin Roosevelt went to war with it, and more recently the United States fought an energy crisis with it. For several months every year, for better or worse, daylight savings time affects vast numbers of people throughout the world. And from Ben Franklin's era to today, its story has been an intriguing and sometimes-bizarre amalgam of colorful personalities and serious technical issues, purported costs and perceived benefits, conflicts between interest groups and government policymakers. It impacts diverse and unexpected areas, including agricultural practices, street crime, the reporting of sports scores, traffic accidents, the inheritance rights of twins, and voter turnout. Illustrated with a popular look at science and history, Seize the Daylight presents an intriguing and surprisingly entertaining story of our attempt to regulate the sunlight hours.
Basic Books, 9781560257967, 272pp.
Publication Date: February 22, 2006
About the Author
David Prerau holds a Ph.D. from M.I.T. and has coauthored three U.S. government reports to Congress on the effects of daylight savings time. He works as a senior "knowledge expert" and specializes in artificial intelligence. He lives in Chestnut Hill, Massachusetts.