Introduction Kepler's New Astronomy On Proportion Recommended Books


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Max Caspar's 1947 work, Kepler, is the definitive biography of the astronomer.

Although the full translation of the New Astronomy is out of print, William H. Donahue has produced an abridged edition and course module entitled Selections from Kepler's Astronomia Nova, as well as a translation of Kepler's Optics.

Kepler's Harmony of the World is available in a translation by the American Philosophical Society, and Kepler's first work, the Mysterium Cosmographicum, is available here in a 1981 translation by A.M Duncan.

The staff of NASA's Kepler Mission has encouraged us to include The Sleepwalkers, Arthur Koestler's best selling history of early astronomy, Kitty Ferguson's Tycho & Kepler, and James A. Connor's Kepler's Witch.

We also recommend the Leibniz-Clarke Correspondence and its engaging discourse on the subject of metaphysical versus mathematical principles. Clarke argues on behalf of Newton's mathematical interpretation, while Leibniz can be said to defend Kepler’s metaphysical approach.

For younger readers, we recommend Archimedes and the Door of Science.

We recommend a number of books below for a general audience on the history of science:

Peter Pesic, Tutor and Musician-in-Residence at St. John's College, Santa Fe has produced a number of works on the history and philosophy of science. We recommend his Abel's Proof: An Essay on the Sources and Meaning of Mathematical Unsolvability for its breadth of inquiry and philosophical insights. Pesic's Labyrinth: A Search for the Hidden Meaning of Science includes a chapter on Kepler entitled "Kepler at the Bridge."


Mario Livio's The Golden Ratio broadly explores the concepts of congruence and harmony in science and contains a number of good chapters on Kepler. Roger Penrose's Road to Reality introduces readers to the conceptual landscape of modern-day mathematical physics.


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