Praise for Galileo's Mistake:
"...fresh and compelling."
"Well-presented scientific history with an interesting philosophical twist"
"Rowland's is an audacious position"
The New York Times
"Rowland's triumph is in examining Galileo's method over his facts and winning an argument that was lost more than 350 years ago. His book provides a fascinating contribution to a debate that is particularly germane today and is likely to be equally important 300 years from now."
"I recommend it strongly. Rowland tells the story well and with style and...backed by serious research and sensitivity to the issues. The history is embedded in a modern-day travelogue, interspersed with musings about the meaning of life."
The Globe and Mail
"Rowland does an impressive job of bringing the 17th century to life...he builds a compelling case that Galileo and the Church differed over something far more important than whether the earth revolved around the sun-they differed on the very nature of truth and how mortals can come to know it."
"An excellent mixture of science and philosophy."
David Pitt, Bookloons
"Galileo's Mistake is a lofty and ambitious philosophical exploration, and
Rowland's considerable gifts as a writer make the book pleasurable and
captivating. Rowland skilfully weaves history, biography, science writing, and
philosophical overviews into the comfortable familiarity of a travel narrative."
"Galileo's Mistake has the lazy ease of a multi-course Italian
dinner, at once relaxing and enriching".
Robert Wiersema, Quill & Quire
"...a superb work...an ambitious, even heroic, interpretation of the Galileo-Church controversy. Rowland has included a wonderfully accurate, exquisitely painted presentation of the political, cultural, and historical setting in which the Galileo-Church debate finds a clearly natural location."
B. J. Hodgson, PhD, Trent University Faculty of Philosophy
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BOOK REVIEWS OF GALILEO'S MISTAKE
Galileo's Mistake: A New Look at the Epic Confrontation between Galileo and the Church
by Wade Rowland
Star - Ledger Book Review of Galileo's Mistake
Review by Nan Goldberg
Star - Ledger newspaper
Wade Rowland, author of the acclaimed "Ockham's Razor," focuses on what he calls "one of the defining narratives of modern Western culture": the 1633 trial for heresy and conviction of Galileo Galilei, an astronomer and mathematician.
The confrontation between the scientist and the Catholic Church marked a turning point from "the Age of Faith to the Age of Reason - from an era of religion and spirituality to an epoch of science and materialism."
Galileo's heretical insistence that the Earth revolves around the sun was ultimately proved to be true - an ending to the story, Rowland points out, that supports certain contemporary moral judgments, such as "the supreme power and validity of reason" and "the dangers and arbitrariness of religious authority."
But Rowland wonders: What if Western culture got the science right but the moral lessons wrong? If scientific knowledge is not necessarily a virtue, then we have to rethink the way we have allowed advances in science to dictate how we live ourselves.
Book review by Star - Ledger Newark, NY
The New York Times Book Review of Galileo's Mistake - Books of the Times Review
"Rowland's is an audacious position... in 1992 the church itself admitted that it had erred in condemming Galileo. As headlines mockingly put it at the time, the Vatican had finally acknowledged that the Earth revolved around the Sun. But to Mr. Rowland such descriptions trvialize the real issues at stake in the conflict, namely the essential nature of the universe and which sphere - science or faith - can better grasp it."
Book review by Michael Massing, The New York Times - Books of the Times Book Review
Other Book Reviews of Galileo's Mistake:
- The Myth of Galileo
by Donald DeMarco, St. Jerome's University
"Rowland has given us a personal and entertaining trip to Italy and into the world of a most controversial seventeenth-century thinker who, in his confrontation with the Church, forces us to think more deeply and more carefully about the boundaries between faith and reason. In deconstructing a myth, he has re-established a moral, namely, that science without an accompanying ethical vision, is dehumanizing."
Read the complete review.
- Kirkus Reviews - book review of Galileo's Mistake
- "Rowland provocatively challenges the prevailing view"
Read the book review of Galileo's Mistake by Booklist
- "Rowland is correct in gauging the role of the Church in Galileo's trial, but this work is likely to be controversial"
Read the book review of Galileo's Mistake by the Literary Journal New York, NY
- "Rowland's is an audacious position"
Read the book review of Galileo's Mistake by the Michael Massing, New York Times book review
Title: Galileo's Mistake
Subtitle: A New Look at the Epic Confrontation between Galileo and the Church
Author: Wade Rowland
Publication Date: July 2003
Hardcover: 320 pages
List Price: $25.95 US
Publisher: Arcade Publishing
For details on the Canadian edition of Galileo's Mistake, published by Thomas Allen Publishers, click here.