Twenty-five years after its initial publication, The Making of the Atomic Bomb remains the definitive history of nuclear weapons and the Manhattan Project. From the turn-of-the-century discovery of nuclear energy to the dropping of the first bombs on Japan, Richard Rhodes’s Pulitzer Prize-winning book details the science, the people, and the socio-political realities that led to the development of the atomic bomb.

This sweeping account begins in the 19th century, with the discovery of nuclear fission, and continues to World War Two and the Americans’ race to beat Hitler’s Nazis. That competition launched the Manhattan Project and the nearly overnight construction of a vast military-industrial complex that culminated in the fateful dropping of the first bombs on Hiroshima and Nagasaki.

Reading like a character-driven suspense novel, the book introduces the players in this saga of physics, politics, and human psychology—from FDR and Einstein to the visionary scientists who pioneered quantum theory and the application of thermonuclear fission, including Planck, Szilard, Bohr, Oppenheimer, Fermi, Teller, Meitner, von Neumann, and Lawrence.

From nuclear power’s earliest foreshadowing in the work of H.G. Wells to the bright glare of Trinity at Alamogordo and the arms race of the Cold War, this dread invention forever changed the course of human history, and The Making of The Atomic Bomb provides a panoramic backdrop for that story.

Richard Rhodes’s ability to craft compelling biographical portraits is matched only by his rigorous scholarship. Told in rich human, political, and scientific detail that any reader can follow, The Making of the Atomic Bomb is a thought-provoking and masterful work.
A “meticulously researched” (The New York Times Book Review) examination of energy transitions over time and an exploration of the current challenges presented by global warming, a surging world population, and renewable energy—from Pulitzer Prize- and National Book Award-winning author Richard Rhodes.

People have lived and died, businesses have prospered and failed, and nations have risen to world power and declined, all over energy challenges. Through an unforgettable cast of characters, Pulitzer Prize-winning author Richard Rhodes explains how wood gave way to coal and coal made room for oil, as we now turn to natural gas, nuclear power, and renewable energy. “Entertaining and informative…a powerful look at the importance of science” (NPR.org), Rhodes looks back on five centuries of progress, through such influential figures as Queen Elizabeth I, King James I, Benjamin Franklin, Herman Melville, John D. Rockefeller, and Henry Ford.

In his “magisterial history…a tour de force of popular science” (Kirkus Reviews, starred review), Rhodes shows how breakthroughs in energy production occurred; from animal and waterpower to the steam engine, from internal-combustion to the electric motor. He looks at the current energy landscape, with a focus on how wind energy is competing for dominance with cast supplies of coal and natural gas. He also addresses the specter of global warming, and a population hurtling towards ten billion by 2100.

Human beings have confronted the problem of how to draw energy from raw material since the beginning of time. Each invention, each discovery, each adaptation brought further challenges, and through such transformations, we arrived at where we are today. “A beautifully written, often inspiring saga of ingenuity and progress…Energy brings facts, context, and clarity to a key, often contentious subject” (Booklist, starred review).
From the Pulitzer Prize–winning and bestselling author of The Making of the Atomic Bomb, “The most extraordinary book about the Spanish Civil War ever encountered” (The Washington Post).

The Spanish Civil War (1936–1939) inspired and haunted an extraordinary number of exceptional artists and writers, including Pablo Picasso, Joan Miró, Martha Gellhorn, Ernest Hemingway, George Orwell, and John Dos Passos. The idealism of the cause—defending democracy from fascism at a time when Europe was darkening toward another world war—and the brutality of the conflict inspired some of their best work: Guernica, For Whom the Bell Tolls, Homage to Catalonia, The Spanish Earth.

The war spurred breakthroughs in military and medical technology as well. New aircraft, new weapons, new tactics and strategy all emerged during this time. Progress arose from the horror: the doctors and nurses who volunteered to serve with the Spanish defenders devised major advances in battlefield surgery and frontline blood transfusion. In those ways, and in many others, the Spanish Civil War served as a test bed for World War II, and for the entire twentieth century.

From the life of John James Audubon to the invention of the atomic bomb, readers have long relied on Richard Rhodes to explain, distill, and dramatize crucial moments in history. Now, he takes us into battlefields and bomb shelters, into the studios of artists, into the crowded wards of war hospitals, and into the hearts and minds of a rich cast of characters to show how the ideological, aesthetic, and technological developments that emerged in Spain and changed the world forever. “Hell and Good Company is vivid and emotive…thrilling reading” (The Wall Street Journal).
Why do some men, women and even children assault, batter, rape, mutilate and murder? In his stunning new book, the Pulitzer Prize-winner Richard Rhodes provides a startling and persuasive answer.

Why They Killexplores the discoveries of a maverick American criminologist, Dr. Lonnie Athens -- himself the child of a violent family -- which challenge conventional theories about violent behavior. By interviewing violent criminals in prison, Dr. Athens has identified a pattern of social development common to all seriously violent people -- a four-stage process he calls "violentization":
-- First, brutalization: A young person is forced by violence or the threat of violence to submit to an aggressive authority figure; he witnesses the violent subjugation of intimates, and the authority figure coaches him to use violence to settle disputes.
-- Second, belligerency: The dispirited subject, determined to prevent his further violent subjugation, heeds his coach and resolves to resort to violence.
-- Third, violent performances: His violent response to provocation succeeds, and he reads respect and fear in the eyes of others.
-- Fourth, virulency: Exultant, he determines from now on to utilize serious violence as a means of dealing with people -- and he bonds with others who believe as he does.

Since all four stages must be fully experienced in sequence and completed to produce a violent individual, we see how intervening to interrupt the process can prevent a tragic outcome.

Rhodes supports Athens's theory with historical evidence and shows how it explains such violent careers as those of Perry Smith (the killer central to Truman Capote's narrative In Cold Blood), Mike Tyson, "preppy rapist" Alex Kelly, and Lee Harvey Oswald.

Why They Kill challenges with devastating evidence the theory that violent behavior is impulsive, unconsciously motivated and predetermined. It offers compelling insights into the terrible, ongoing dilemma of criminal violence that plagues families, neighborhoods, cities and schools.
  普立茲獎得主最新力作!
  美國Amazon暢銷書No. 1!
  《紐約時報》、《華爾街日報》等各大媒體一致讚揚


  核災威脅與空汙危機,兩難卻得當機立斷!

  能源的決策,台灣人民該如何抉擇?
  在幾乎被遺忘的歷史知識當中,
  你將可發掘出人類未來之路的線索……

  ★對能源的追求,造就致命的隱形殺手
  二十世紀以來,工業迅速發展,讓加州深受空汙問題困擾。嚴重的霧霾,使呼吸道疾病大爆發,一九五○年代,曾在兩天內奪去四百多條人命,一年超過七萬人逃離洛杉磯。為解決日益嚴重的霧霾問題,憂心忡忡的官員們找上任教於加州理工學院的化學家艾瑞•哈根史密特,請他展開研究。

  哈根史密特原先的研究主題是精油的萃取與合成,他清掉堆滿實驗室的鳳梨,打開窗戶,引進幾千立方呎的霧霾空氣,透過液態氮冷卻,凝聚出幾滴褐色、惡臭的黏膠。他發現黏膠的化學成分,來自汽車廢氣與附近煉油廠的排放物。這種新玩意受到陽光催化後,會使空氣變成黑褐色。

  石油公司的化學家嘲笑哈根史密特的分析,並宣稱根本沒發現這種化學反應,這激起了固執的哈根史密特的憤怒。他於是利用分析鳳梨的設備,解析出危害空氣的種種成分,並用舊輪胎的脆化證明了霧霾中含有過量的臭氧。加州政府就此介入,這才展開了淨化洛杉磯的過程。

  ★「能源轉型」遙遙無期,為什麼?
  採用新的能源來源為何如此緩慢?長年任職於國際應用系統分析研究所(IIASA)的義大利物理學家切薩雷•馬凱提(Cesare Marchetti)提出他的見解:社會是個學習系統。它以文化擴散運作──觀念從一個人散播到其他人──很像傳染病。發明新科技只是開始。亨利•福特的T型車需要加油站。加油站需要汽油,汽油來自石油,石油必須去找,煉油廠必須處理,管線必須把油送到煉油廠,把汽油送到車輛集中的各大城市。人們必須放棄騎馬或搭馬車去買汽車,學習開車──以此類推。當拉鍊開始取代鈕扣,有些人抗拒改變,因為他們認為拉鍊是罪惡:它們讓脫衣服變容易。

  煤炭對伊莉莎白時代的許多人而言,是魔鬼的排泄物,如同現在核能給許多反對者的印象。而化石燃料公司對於核能和可再生能源一概不喜:這兩者會競爭市場空間,傷害到他們的利益。如同美國人生活中的許多事,能源來源已經被政治化,在這樣的局勢下,我們恐難以拯救地球。

  ★核能,還是綠能?這是個問題
  二十一世紀的大挑戰將是抑制全球暖化,並為數量增加的世界人口,提供足以共存共榮的能源。

  人們對於核能的擔憂其來有自,這片陰影從二戰以後就開始蔓延。即便樂觀幽默如物理學家理查•費曼,都曾因核能可能帶來的危害而陷入憂鬱。而在歷經三哩島、車諾比、福島等三起核災之後,全球核能發展的腳步,已在二○一七年開始放緩。

  另一方面,儘管再生能源在全球發電總量逐漸增加,但占比始終甚微。在大多數國家的電力組合中,太陽能仍相對微小,即使一向最熱心接納這項科技的歐洲,太陽能平均只提供電力需求的百分之四。二○一六年時,總安裝的風電產能也遠低於世界總電力的百分之一。

  「產能因素」(實際能發電的時間長短)是所有間歇性能源來源的共通問題。陽光未必隨時有,風未必不停吹,也不一定保證終年有水來推動水壩的渦輪機。

  ★能源,決定未來世界霸權的關鍵
  繁榮的西方國家如果下定決心,或許勉強負擔得起用可再生能源來生產所有動力;然而絕大多數國家沒有這種選項。但是,核能會是人類在全球暖化下的唯一對策嗎?不,它也不是,就像我們無法光靠可再生能源系統一樣。核能在歐洲和美國強大的政治抗拒下,其實腳步不穩。歐美地區大幅補貼可再生能源,也嚴格規範核能的使用。於此同時,新興的核能電廠多設立在東亞與南亞,尤其是印度、中國、日本與南韓。

  其實,每種能源系統都有它的優缺點,綜覽四百年來的能源發展史,你會驚覺:人類的倖存或死亡,強權的崛起與消殞,都與能源挑戰密不可分。普立茲獎得主理查•羅德斯,將在本書中透過難忘的角色卡司,說明人類是如何憑藉才智、毅力甚至道德勇氣,一次次走過看似難如登天的「能源轉型」,並以其獨樹一格的觀點,告訴我們:那些歷史上幾乎被遺忘的知識,或許,能為我們指出未來的道路!

本書特色

  ★普立茲獎得主理查•羅德斯最新力作!出版以來長踞美國Amazon書店能源類暢銷榜前三名。
  ★收錄十六世紀到二十二世紀,能源發展歷程與最新未來預測,讓你看清未來能源的可能走向。
  ★排除政治角力與商業利益的蒙蔽,帶領你回歸人文本質,重新思考攸關人類命運的能源議題。

名人推薦

  周桂田/臺灣大學國家發展研究所所長、臺灣大學風險社會與政策研究中心主任
  房慧真/作家、記者
  楊士範/The News Lens關鍵評論網共同創辦人暨內容長
  葉宗洸/國立清華大學工程與系統科學系教授兼原子科學技術發展中心主任
  雷雅淇/PanSci泛科學 總編輯
  蔣竹山/中央大學歷史研究所副教授
  蕭宇辰/「臺灣吧Taiwan Bar」共同創辦人、「故事:寫給所有人的歷史」共同創辦人
  (依姓氏筆劃排序)

媒體讚譽

  「在這部研究嚴謹的作品裡,羅德斯呈獻四個世紀以來的能源發展與運用,並透過歷史中常被低估的工程師、科學家與發明家,將其魅力展露無遺。」──《紐約時報》(New York Times)

  「他為人類為求達成自身目的而扭曲自然世界的四百年來、無論好壞的探索歷程,提供了一個引人入勝的詮釋。……羅德斯先生再次推出了傑出之作。」──《華爾街日報》(The Wall Street Journal)

  「不論在人類或環境方面,羅德斯毫未遮掩進步所帶來的缺點。……是一部充滿才智與進步、寫作優美、富啟發性的史詩,是普遍讀者的理想選擇。」──《書單》(Booklist)

  「羅德斯令人炫目的《能源,迫在眉睫的抉擇》,講述一段關於人類的需求與好奇、創新與傲慢的故事,極富可讀性……對每一個關注人類對未來世界之衝擊的人來說,是必讀的優秀作品。」——《書頁》(Bookpage)

  「《能源,迫在眉睫的抉擇》是歷史作品,也是滿懷熱忱寫下的道德故事。……羅德斯批判性地回顧能源科技的過去,企求有助於其未來的發展,這樣的期盼令人振奮。」──《科學》(Science)

  「普立茲獎得主、歷史學家暨作家理查•羅德斯,再次擔負起糾纏不清的科技運用議題,使複雜的問題變得平易近人。」──《圖書館雜誌》(Library Journal)

  「羅德斯出色地呈現出蒸汽機與原子爐的內部運作,而他生動的敘事,將讀者帶進驚心動魄的旅程……他的迷人故事將令科技工作者欣喜,尤其吸引發明家與發現者。」──《出版人週刊》(Publishers Weekly)

Twenty-five years after its initial publication, The Making of the Atomic Bomb remains the definitive history of nuclear weapons and the Manhattan Project. From the turn-of-the-century discovery of nuclear energy to the dropping of the first bombs on Japan, Richard Rhodes’s Pulitzer Prize-winning book details the science, the people, and the socio-political realities that led to the development of the atomic bomb.

This sweeping account begins in the 19th century, with the discovery of nuclear fission, and continues to World War Two and the Americans’ race to beat Hitler’s Nazis. That competition launched the Manhattan Project and the nearly overnight construction of a vast military-industrial complex that culminated in the fateful dropping of the first bombs on Hiroshima and Nagasaki.

Reading like a character-driven suspense novel, the book introduces the players in this saga of physics, politics, and human psychology—from FDR and Einstein to the visionary scientists who pioneered quantum theory and the application of thermonuclear fission, including Planck, Szilard, Bohr, Oppenheimer, Fermi, Teller, Meitner, von Neumann, and Lawrence.

From nuclear power’s earliest foreshadowing in the work of H.G. Wells to the bright glare of Trinity at Alamogordo and the arms race of the Cold War, this dread invention forever changed the course of human history, and The Making of The Atomic Bomb provides a panoramic backdrop for that story.

Richard Rhodes’s ability to craft compelling biographical portraits is matched only by his rigorous scholarship. Told in rich human, political, and scientific detail that any reader can follow, The Making of the Atomic Bomb is a thought-provoking and masterful work.
A “meticulously researched” (The New York Times Book Review) examination of energy transitions over time and an exploration of the current challenges presented by global warming, a surging world population, and renewable energy—from Pulitzer Prize- and National Book Award-winning author Richard Rhodes.

People have lived and died, businesses have prospered and failed, and nations have risen to world power and declined, all over energy challenges. Through an unforgettable cast of characters, Pulitzer Prize-winning author Richard Rhodes explains how wood gave way to coal and coal made room for oil, as we now turn to natural gas, nuclear power, and renewable energy. “Entertaining and informative…a powerful look at the importance of science” (NPR.org), Rhodes looks back on five centuries of progress, through such influential figures as Queen Elizabeth I, King James I, Benjamin Franklin, Herman Melville, John D. Rockefeller, and Henry Ford.

In his “magisterial history…a tour de force of popular science” (Kirkus Reviews, starred review), Rhodes shows how breakthroughs in energy production occurred; from animal and waterpower to the steam engine, from internal-combustion to the electric motor. He looks at the current energy landscape, with a focus on how wind energy is competing for dominance with cast supplies of coal and natural gas. He also addresses the specter of global warming, and a population hurtling towards ten billion by 2100.

Human beings have confronted the problem of how to draw energy from raw material since the beginning of time. Each invention, each discovery, each adaptation brought further challenges, and through such transformations, we arrived at where we are today. “A beautifully written, often inspiring saga of ingenuity and progress…Energy brings facts, context, and clarity to a key, often contentious subject” (Booklist, starred review).
From the Pulitzer Prize–winning and bestselling author of The Making of the Atomic Bomb, “The most extraordinary book about the Spanish Civil War ever encountered” (The Washington Post).

The Spanish Civil War (1936–1939) inspired and haunted an extraordinary number of exceptional artists and writers, including Pablo Picasso, Joan Miró, Martha Gellhorn, Ernest Hemingway, George Orwell, and John Dos Passos. The idealism of the cause—defending democracy from fascism at a time when Europe was darkening toward another world war—and the brutality of the conflict inspired some of their best work: Guernica, For Whom the Bell Tolls, Homage to Catalonia, The Spanish Earth.

The war spurred breakthroughs in military and medical technology as well. New aircraft, new weapons, new tactics and strategy all emerged during this time. Progress arose from the horror: the doctors and nurses who volunteered to serve with the Spanish defenders devised major advances in battlefield surgery and frontline blood transfusion. In those ways, and in many others, the Spanish Civil War served as a test bed for World War II, and for the entire twentieth century.

From the life of John James Audubon to the invention of the atomic bomb, readers have long relied on Richard Rhodes to explain, distill, and dramatize crucial moments in history. Now, he takes us into battlefields and bomb shelters, into the studios of artists, into the crowded wards of war hospitals, and into the hearts and minds of a rich cast of characters to show how the ideological, aesthetic, and technological developments that emerged in Spain and changed the world forever. “Hell and Good Company is vivid and emotive…thrilling reading” (The Wall Street Journal).
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