1. Space in Early Science

Textbooks: [SZE] Nick Huggett (1999) Space from Zeno to Einstein (required). Readings also available on Blackboard.

Wk Date Topic Reading Due Coursework Due
1.1 Aug 26 Science in Antiquity BWS Chapter 2 (up to Plato) -
1.2 Aug 28 Plato / Introductory Exercises BWS Chapter 2 (Plato), SZE Chapter 1. Also: USC Logic Web Unit 1. Further reading: TU Plato (optional). -
2.1 Sep 2 Euclid and Zeno SZE Chapter 2, SZE Chapter 3 (up to p. 38), SEP Zeno. Further reading: SEP Zeno's Paradoxes (optional). Assignment 1
2.2 Sep 4 Zeno Resolved SZE Chapter 3, EAE Chapters 3-4. Further reading: Salmon Appendix (optional). -
3.1 Sep 9 Aristotle BWS Chapter 3 Assignment 2
3.2 Sep 11 Aristotle's Theory of Place SZE Chapter 4. Further reading: TU Aristotle (optional). -

2. The Copernican and Scientific Revolutions

Wk Date Topic Reading Due Coursework Due
4.1 Sep 16
Early Astronomy CR Chapter 3. Further reading: TU Ptolemy. Assignment 3
4.2 Sep 18 Copernicus SZE Chapter 5, FH reading (pp. 158-180) -
5.1 Sep 23 Galileo, Brahe and Kepler CR Chapter 6. Further reading: TU Galileo & Kepler Assignment 4
5.2 Sep 25 Galileo's Mechanics CMS Chapter 2. Notes on Logical Argument -
6.1 Sep 30 Descartes and Newton SZE Chapter 6, SZE Chapter 7 Essay Assignment Part 1
6.2 Oct 2 Newton's Principia Pask 3.3-5.5, Pask 6.1-6.5,7.1-7.2

3. Philosophical Controversies

Wk Date Topic Reading Due Coursework Due
7.1 Oct 7 Leibniz and Clarke SZE Chapter 8 Essay #1 Outline.
Example Thesis Statement.
7.2 Oct 9 Berkeley and Mach SZE Chapter 9 Assignment 5

4. Development of Geometry

Wk Date Topic Reading Due Coursework Due
8.1 Oct 14 Perspective and Galileo Transcript of Joseph W. Dauben Documentary Essay #1 Due.
Grading Guidelines.
8.2 Oct 16 Midterm Exam Midterm Exam Guidelines Midterm Exam
9.1 Oct 21 Kant and Euclid SZE Chapter 12, Norton Chapter 14 -
9.2 Oct 23 Non-Euclidean Geometry SZE Chapter 13, Norton Chapter 15. Further Reading: Einstein Chapter 1-2, Poincare Chapter 3-5. -
10.1 Oct 28Four Dimensions and Curved Spaces Rucker Chapter 1; Norton Ch. 13, Ch. 16, Ch. 17. For fun: A rotating hypercube, Banchoff (1978) Hypercube Projections and Slicing. Further reading: Abbott (1884) Flatland, Helmholtz (1876) Geometrical Axioms. Assignment 6

5. Relativity and Space-Time

Wk Date Topic Reading Due Coursework Due
10.2 Oct 30 Understanding Space-Time SZE Chapter 10. -
11.1 Nov 4 Special Relativity Mermin Chapters 1-3, Norton Ch. 2, Ch. 3, Ch 4. Assignment 7
11.2 Nov 6 Library Resources (Ross Scimeca) No reading. Come to class with a laptop if possible. Attendance will be taken. Essay 2 Pt. 1
12.1 Nov 11 No Class No Class -
12.2 Nov 13 Minkowski Space Norton Ch. 10, Mermin Ch. 8. Assignment 8
13.1 Nov 18 Length Contraction, Time Dilation, Simultaneity Norton Ch. 5, Ch. 11. Einstein 1905 (Sec. 1-2). Assignment 9
13.2 Nov 20 Velocity Addition, E=mc2 Norton Ch. 6, Ch. 7, Mermin Ch. 4 -
14.1 Nov 25 General Relativity Norton Ch. 18, Ch. 19, SZE Ch. 14 Assignment 10
14.2 Nov 27 No class No class No class
15.1 Dec 2 Gravitation, Black Holes Norton Ch. 20, Ch. 21, Ch. 27. Further reading: Ch. 28 Essay #2 Progress Report

6. The Fourth Dimension in Art and Science

Wk Date Topic Reading Due Coursework Due
15.2 Dec 4 Geometry and Modern Art Henderson, Tony Robbin -
16.1 Dec 9 Study Session Essay Grading Guidelines Essay #2
16.2 Dec 11 Exam Week - -
17.1 Dec 16 Final Exam - -