Time Travel

Time Travel : A History

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"A time-jumping, head-tripping odyssey." --The Millions "A bracing swim in the waters of science, technology and fiction." --Washington Post "A thrilling journey of ideas." --Boston Globe From the acclaimed author of The Information and Chaos, here is a mind-bending exploration of time travel: its subversive origins, its evolution in literature and science, and its influence on our understanding of time itself. The story begins at the turn of the previous century, with the young H. G. Wells writing and rewriting the fantastic tale that became his first book and an international sensation: The Time Machine. It was an era when a host of forces was converging to transmute the human understanding of time, some philosophical and some technological: the electric telegraph, the steam railroad, the discovery of buried civilizations, and the perfection of clocks. James Gleick tracks the evolution of time travel as an idea that becomes part of contemporary culture--from Marcel Proust to Doctor Who, from Jorge Luis Borges to Woody Allen. He investigates the inevitable looping paradoxes and examines the porous boundary between pulp fiction and modern physics. Finally, he delves into a temporal shift that is unsettling our own moment: the instantaneous wired world, with its all-consuming present and vanishing future. (With a color frontispiece and black-and-white illustrations throughout)show more

Product details

  • Hardback | 336 pages
  • 160 x 193 x 30mm | 544g
  • Pantheon Books
  • United States
  • English
  • 0307908798
  • 9780307908797
  • 265,519

Review quote

James Gleick is a master historian of ideas no one else can do what he does. Synthesis leads to elucidation leads to stunning, original insight. "Time Travel, " like so much of his work, is simply indispensable. Charles Yu, author of "How to Live Safely in a Science Fictional Universe" Magnificent. A rivetinghistory of an idea that changed us so profoundly, we forgot we had even been changed. But Gleick remembers. Lev Grossman, Books Editor of "TIME" and author of "The Magicians" Trilogy"show more

About James Gleick

JAMES GLEICK (around.com) is our leading chronicler of science and technology, the best-selling author of Chaos: Making a New Science, Genius: The Life and Science of Richard Feynman, and The Information: A History, a Theory, a Flood. His books have been translated into thirty languages.show more

Table of contents

1    Machine    1 2    Fin de Siècle    19 3    Philosophers and Pulps    45 4    Ancient Light    73 5    By Your Bootstraps    91 6    Arrow of Time    109 7    A River, a Path, a Maze    123 8    Eternity    145 9    Buried Time    165 10  Backward    189 11  The Paradoxes    219 12  What Is Time?    245  13  Our Only Boat    271 14  Presently    293 Acknowledgments    315 Sources and Further Reading    317 Index    323 show more