Rejection and Acceptance of Plate Tectonics—a History of Earth Science in Postwar Japan

Volume 03, Issue 1

In his book on the history of earth science in postwar Japan, Dr. Jiro Tomari (泊次郎) depicts the unique process whereby plate tectonics have been brought into the Japanese earth science community. (Note that the discipline “earth science” is roughly separated into geology and geophysics.) It is known that social context played an important role in this process, which is quite different from the process in other countries; however, there is little research focusing on this topic. Tomari's study does hit the spot and is therefore valuable from the point of view of STS as well as the history of science.

The book consists of nine chapters (including an Introduction and a Conclusion) with Foreword, Afterword, reference materials (a chronological table of events regarding plate tectonics between 1912 and 1993, a table of geologic time, and a figure about geologic belts of the Japanese islands), and two indices (of subjects and of names). Notes are listed at the end of each chapter.

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