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Books > History > Americas > United States > 1597404284
  1. The Heavens and the Earth: A Political History of the Space Age
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  2. The Heavens and the Earth: A Political History of the Space Age

    Delivery: 10-20 Working Days
    Customer Ratings (16 reviews)
    Price R1698.00

Additional Information

Drawing on published literature, archival sources in both the United States and Europe, interviews with key participants, and important declassified material, McDougall presents the stories of the U.S., European, and Soviet space programs as fascinating examples of comparative public policy. McDougall argues that the Soviet Union made its way into space first because it employed the world's first "technocracy." Discussing the political leadership of Khrushchev, Eiscuhower, Kennedy, and Johnson, he makes clear why the United States quickly developed its own version of state-driven technology, how it succeeded, and what it cost - materially and morally.

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Walter A. McDougall
Brand: ACLS Humanities E-Book
Used Book in Good Condition
ACLS Humanities E-Book
ACLS Humanities E-Book
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

Possibly the best book I've had to read while studying a Masters in International Relations. So good, that I've actually read it twice (though skimmed a few bits the second time - it's long and tad bit flowery in parts).

McDougall has done a fantastic job in digging into the story behind the space race, starting back in 1800s. He shows how Russia, pre-Soviet era, had a significant number of people dreaming of missions into space, which the USSR inherited.

He also shows how the US realized one of the key, if not the key, benefit of satellites would be spying on others - and this required a regime that allowed satellite overflight of foreign countries. Which explains why the US chose only it's 3rd best group of rocketeers to compete to launch a satellite.

Unfortunately, again as McDougall explains, the US kept this decision very, very secret and did nothing to explain this to the US public, so it badly lost the PR game when the USSR launched... Read more
This is more than political history, however you might define that as a genre. This is more than a highly readable, deeply thoughtful presentation of the race between super powers which "ended" nearly 30 years ago. Eisenhower, Khrushchev, Kennedy, Johnson, von Braun, they are all here. But so are Plato, Dante, Nietzsche and Augustine. This is a meditation on what it means to be human in an age of never ending discovery through the extension of science and technology. McDougall boldly goes where so few dare, beyond the rockets and satellites in search of the soul. We still are living in this age and this timeless book still speaks to us.
Being a so-called 'Child of Apollo.' I read this book expecting few new insights to the space program's formulative period. Gee, was I ever wrong! This book is filled with nuggests of historic information that provides the reader with greater context and historic analysis than any other book on the topic I have yet to read. Any student of history, political science, or space advocate should read this book carefully to be well-grounded in the Apollo Era. McDougall did an outstanding job in relating to the reader details of the context of the American and Soviet space programs throughout the 50's and 60's. Knowledge of the space age would be totally incomplete without having read this book! I highly recommend it. It is no wonder that this book won McDougall the 1986 Pulitzer Prize.
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