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The Rainbow Bridge: Rainbows in Art, Myth, and Science Hardcover – Jun 30 1997

5.0 out of 5 stars 1 customer review

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Product details

  • Hardcover: 408 pages
  • Publisher: Penn State University Press (July 23 2001)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0271019778
  • ISBN-13: 978-0271019772
  • Product Dimensions: 21.6 x 2.9 x 27.9 cm
  • Shipping Weight: 1.9 Kg
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars 1 customer review
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #999,688 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Product description

From Publishers Weekly

The authors of this history of iridescence attribute the fear of rainbows, prevalent in many cultures, to their uncanny remoteness: something that can never be outrun can be both tantalizing and awful, not to mention divine. No wonder the rainbow sunlight bent by raindrops inspires belief in Wotan's heavenly bridge, the elusive pot of gold and the Greek goddess Iris, herald of war and revenge. Lee, a meteorology professor at the U.S. Naval Academy, and Fraser, who teaches meteorology at Penn State, have created a lambent blend of art history, history of science and cultural criticism that, in the spirit of the rainbow bridge of the book's title, easily straddles the arts and sciences. Their discussions of Isaac Oliver's allegorical Rainbow Portrait of Queen Elizabeth I, Peter Paul Rubens's use of artifice in his bucolic Rainbow Landscape and the nature of the sublime in J.M.W. Turner's seascapes are as lucid as their explanations of various theories of rainbow geometry and color, from Aristotle and Johannes Kepler to Enlightenment thinkers Descartes and Newton, who posited the first satisfactory rainbow theories. The chapters on myth and art are as brilliant as those on modern optics and illustrate how the rainbow has been as elusive to scientists as to ancient mythmakers. This smart, impassioned cross-disciplinary study, with its many color photos and illustrations, provides an eight-course feast for the intellect and the eyes. (July)
Copyright 2001 Reed Business Information, Inc.

Review

“A learned and gracefully written book which surveys every important aspect of the rainbow, including its role in myth, religion, and art. This eye-opening volume reveals the considerable physical and cultural significance of a remarkable natural masterpiece. . . . The chapters on myth and art are as brilliant as those on modern optics and illustrate how the rainbow has been as elusive to scientists as to ancient mythmakers. This smart, impassioned cross-disciplinary study, with its many color photos and illustrations. provides an eight-course feast for the intellect and the eyes.”

—Bruce Cole, Department of the History of Art, Indiana University



The Rainbow Bridge is a celebration of rainbows as bridges that span between cultures—the liberal arts and the sciences, the past and the present, the living and the dead, the sacred and the profane, the academic and the commercial. It succeeds brilliantly in developing and sustaining this theme by drawing on a great number of original sources. It will be an indispensable resource for scientists interested in art, and for artists interested in science—a bridge indeed.”

—George Siscoe, Department of Atmospheric Sciences, UCLA, Retired



“This smart, impassioned cross-disciplinary study, with its many color photos and illustrations, provides an eight-course feast for the intellect and the eyes.”

Publishers Weekly



“Over it, under it, sideways, you name the angle: a spectacular cultural history of the rainbow in art, myth and science. It shimmers.”

—Carlin Romano, Philadelphia Inquirer



“Lee and Fraser have written an authoritative book on rainbows. From prehistoric art to modern-day advertising, they explore the cultural and artistic symbolism of the rainbow. . . . This book will be a great addition to the library of anyone interested in art and science.”

—D. M. Mason, CHOICE



“Stunningly well informed about the art, science, philosophy and history of all eras since the Periclean Golden Age, unerringly elegant, flatteringly intelligent and beautifully illustrated, it is a masterpiece of accessible scholarship.”

—Philip Ball, Nature



“The rainbow is one of humankind’s premier symbols, permeating our myths, art, and literature. It serves as a perpetual source of inspiration for aspiring atmospheric scientists and cornerstone problem in the history of science. Covering such an extensive field, as the authors have done superbly, requires polyglot abilities. Both authors have made fundamental contributions to our understanding of rainbows and have at the same time become historians of the first class. Reading The Rainbow Bridge is a cultural and scientific happening.

The Rainbow Bridge traverses an immense ground with style, grace, wit, and insight. It will provide atmospheric scientists with an authoritative account of the scientific and cultural roots of their field. And perhaps most important, it will make all of us better observers. Atmospheric scientists who may never have thought of themselves as ‘cultured’ may find themselves with an ability to diagnose paintings with unexpected discrimination and knowledge.”

—Stanley Gedzelman, Bulletin of the American Meteorological Society



“Lee and Fraser have produced an unusual book with universal appeal to all sighted humans, from pre-literate five-year-olds to hyper-literate scholars.”

—Michael C. Barris, Optometry and Vision Science



“Reading The Rainbow Bridge is a cultural and scientific happening.

The Rainbow Bridge traverses an immense ground with style, grace, wit, and insight. It will provide atmospheric scientists with an authoritative account of the scientific and cultural roots of their field.”

—Stanley Gedzelman, Bulletin of the American Meteorological Society



The Rainbow Bridge is an outstanding book.

A treasure, and a treasure trove.”

—Jack Harris, Interdisciplinary Science Reviews

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August 25, 2001
Format: Hardcover
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Amazon.com: 4.4 out of 5 stars 4 reviews
Shiratha
4.0 out of 5 starsExtensive Spectrum of Ideas about Rainbow
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Sharon M Ward
5.0 out of 5 starsThe Rainbow Bridge
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Constance
4.0 out of 5 starsWonderful book
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Philip L
5.0 out of 5 starsDo you like rainbows?
August 25, 2001 - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Hardcover
13 people found this helpful.
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