Chemical Careers in Postwar Britain: Centrifugal Discipline / Centripetal Profession?

Mackie, Robin and Roberts, Gerrylynn (2008). Chemical Careers in Postwar Britain: Centrifugal Discipline / Centripetal Profession? In: Bertomeu-Sánchez, José Ramón; Burns, Duncan Thorburn and Van Tiggelen, Brigitte eds. Neighbours and Territories: The Evolving Identity of Chemistry. Louvain-la-neuve, Belgium: Mémosciences asbl, pp. 565–573.

URL: http://www.euchems.org/Divisions/History/EIC.asp

Abstract

Current discussions arguing that the discipline of chemistry has undergone an irreversible process of fragmentation since the Second World War tend to focus on chemical research. This paper argues that, despite perceived fragmentation in that respect, there remained a recognizable pedagogical discipline of chemistry based on the transmission of core knoweldge and skills. In the case of British chemistry, pedagogically-based arguments from the 1840s about the practicalities of framing a teachable subject remained - and remain - potent.

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