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Science in India (Volume xiii, Part 8)

Jayant Vishnu Narlikar (Editor) History of Science, Philosophy and Culture in Indian Civilization
Synopsis With the Industrial Revolution in the West began a spurt in scientific and technological developments. Which have undergone spectacular, at once amazing changes with the atomic, electronic, and ‘chip’ revolution of the 20th century. The East, which gave the seeds of civilization to the other world: philosophies, religions, logic, mathematics, science and arts, regressed into oblivion – due to reasons that are not far to seek. In India, the beginnings of sciences may be found in high antiquity. The ancient shastras, the philosophical debates of the rishis, and the task of systemizing knowledge were an integral part of institutional arrangements of the ashramas of the Aryan rishis/seers. The monumental treatises of Charaka, Aryabhatta, Bhaskara, Kautilya, and many others still stay as landmarks in the history of science. And the ancient universities, like Taxila and Nalanda were noted as excellent centres for accumulating and spreading knowledge – which, perhaps, affords a veritable stimulus to the modern scientific quest. The ongoing, highly ambitious Project “History of Science, Philosophy and Culture in the Indian Civilization” (PHISPC) decided, at a brainstorming session, to have a series of introspective volumes on the historical aspects of science in India, in which one would review objectively India’s contributions to science from ancient to modern times – taking cognizance not only of the prevailing social and political conditions in India, but also of India’s achievements from a world perspective at that time. The PHISPC also decided to have four volumes, each covering different subject areas and editorially coordinated by different experts. This volume (Volume XIII Part 8) focuses exclusively on Astronomy, Astrology, Mathematics and Physical World. The 14 papers here: each written by an eminent area-specialist, examine, in a historical perspective, varied aspects of Indian astronomy, mathematical astronomy, astrology, and mathematical cultures. The other three volumes propose to deal with Chemistry and Metallurgy; Biology and Medicine; and Cognitive Sciences. Dr Jayant Vishnu Narlikar: an internationally renowned scientist, is Emeritus Professor at Inter University Centre for Astronomy and Astrophysics. Earlier, he headed the Theoretical Astrophysics Group in the Tata Institute of Fundamental Research (1972-89).
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About the author

Jayant Vishnu Narlikar

Jayant Narlikar was born on July 19, 1938 in Kolhapur, Maharashtra and received his early education in the campus of Banaras Hindu University (BHU), where his father Vishnu Vasudeva Narlikar was Professor and Head of the Mathematics Department. His mother Sumati Narlikar was a Sanskrit scholar. After a brilliant career in school and college, Narlikar got his B.Sc. degree in 1957. He went to Cambridge for higher studies, becoming a Wrangler and Tyson Medallist in the Mathematical Tripos. He got his Cambridge degrees in mathematics: B.A.(1960), Ph.D. (1963),M.A. (1964) and Sc.D. (1976), but specialized in astronomy and astrophysics. He distinguished himself at Cambridge with the Smith’s Prize in 1962 and the Adams Prize in 1967. He later stayed on at Cambridge till 1972, as Fellow of King’s College (1963-72) and Founder Staff Member of the Institute of Theoretical Astronomy (1966-72). During this period he laid the foundations of his research work in cosmology and astrophysics in collaboration with his mentor Fred Hoyle.

Narlikar returned to India to join the Tata Institute of Fundamental Research (1972-1989) where under his charge the Theoretical Astrophysics Group acquired international standing. In 1988 he was invited by the University Grants Commission as Founder Director to set up the proposed Inter-University Centre for Astronomy and Astrophysics (IUCAA). Under his direction IUCAA has acquired a world-wide reputation as a centre for excellence in teaching and research in astronomy and astrophysics. He retired from this position in 2003. He is now Emeritus Professor at IUCAA. Narlikar was decorated Padmabhushan in 1965, at the young age of 26. In 2004 he was awarded Padmavibhushan.

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Bibliographic information

Title Science in India (Volume xiii, Part 8)
Format Hardcover
Date published: 31.12.2009
Edition 1st ed.
Publisher Viva Books
Language: English
isbn 8130912686
length xliii+370p., Illustrations; 29cm.