Article ID: CBB001023526

“Balloon Madness”: Politics, Public Entertainment, the Transatlantic Science of Flight, and Late Eighteenth-Century America (2010)


The article discusses ballooning in the U.S. during the late eighteenth-century and its influence on politics, public entertainment, and the transatlantic science of flight. An example is given of a British-born mechanic Joseph Deeker who sought the materials necessary to construct and fill an air balloon. According to the author, Deeker was counting on the generosity of NYC citizens despite the fact that Deeker's arrival in the U.S. was not universally welcomed. Topics include how the trend toward popular validation influenced 18th-century science in America, ballooning as a representation of America's volatile experience with modernity, and insight into human flight and the social aspects of science.

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Authors & Contributors
Lynn, Michael R.
Marshall, Stephanie Pace
Scheppler, Judith A.
Palmisano, Michael J.
Lederman, Leon M.
Keen, Paul
Eighteenth-Century Studies
Science in Context
Minerva: A Review of Science, Learning and Policy
Centaurus: International Magazine of the History of Mathematics, Science, and Technology
Ohio History Journal
British Journal for the History of Science
Prometheus Books
Princeton University Press
Pickering & Chatto
Cornell University Press
Yale University Press
Virginia Polytechnic Institute
Science and society
Science and politics
Balloons and ballooning
Popular culture
Science and culture
Lederman, Leon Max
Eddington, Arthur Stanley
Cohen, Chapman
Mead, Margaret
Jefferson, Thomas
Stoppani, Antonio
United States
Great Britain
Barcelona (Spain)
19th century
18th century
20th century
20th century, early
20th century, late
21st century

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