This book examines nuclear science as a lens into 20th-century America. Atomic Age America looks at the broad influence of atomic energy – a transformative technology – especially on the lives of Americans within a world context. The text examines the social, political, environmental and scientific consequences of atomic energy on the 20th and 21st centuries, with a look back to the origins of atomic theory.
Table of Contents
Introduction: A Most Controversial Technology
Chapter 1 A Community of Scientists: Atomic Theory over the Centuries
Chapter 2 Government Mobilizes the Atom: War, Big Science, and the Manhattan Project
Chapter 3 Hiroshima, Nagasaki, and the Aftermath: From Total War to Cold War
Chapter 4 The Cold War and Atomic Diplomacy: Deterrence, Espionage, and the Super
Chapter 5 Invincible to Vulnerable in the Age of Anxiety: Massive Retaliation, Fallout, and the Sputnik Crisis
Chapter 6 To the Brink: The Military-Industrial Complex, the Berlin and Cuban Crises, and the Lingering Arms Race
Chapter 7 Too Cheap to Meter, Too Tempting to Ignore: Peaceful Uses of the Atom
Chapter 8 Nuclear Power v. The Environment: The Bandwagon Market, Reactor Safety, and the Energy Crisis
Chapter 9 The Post-TMI World, Chernobyl, and the Future of Nuclear Power
Chapter 10 Pax Atomica—or Pox Atomica--at the End of the Cold War
Chapter 11 Proliferation, Terrorism, and Climate Change: The Atom in the 21st Century
Conclusion: From Hiroshima to Fukushima
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