A Scheme of Heaven

Astrology and the Birth of Science

Alexander Boxer
AUD $22.99
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'A delightful and utterly fascinating work of intellectual history.' - Joshua Foer, author of Moonwalking with Einstein

Despite a resurgence in popularity, horoscopes are generally considered to be pseudoscience today - but they were once a cutting-edge scientific tool. In this ingenious work of history, data scientist Alexander Boxer examines a treasure trove of esoteric classical sources to expose the deep imaginative framework by which - for millennia - we made sense of our fates. Astrology, he argues, was the ancient world's most ambitious applied mathematics problem, a grand data-analysis enterprise sustained by some of history's most brilliant minds, from Ptolemy to al-Kindi to Kepler.

A Scheme of Heaven explores the wonderful subtleties of astrological ideas. Telling the stories of their inventors and most influential exponents, Boxer puts them through their paces using modern data sets - finding that the methods of today's scientists are often uncomfortably close to those of astrology's ancient sages.

Author bio:

Alexander Boxer has a doctorate in physics from MIT, a master's degree in the History of Science from Oxford and a bachelors in Classical Language from Yale. His technical research has appeared in journals such as Nature Physics. In his spare time, he is an active member of Atlas Obscura as a D.C.-based 'field agent'.

Category: Popular science
ISBN: 9781781259641
Publisher: Profile Books
Imprint: Profile Trade
Pub Date: February 2021
Page Extent: 336
Format: Paperback - B format
Subject: Astronomical charts & atlases