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Encyclopedia > Joseph Needham

Joseph Terence Montgomery Needham (December 9, 1900March 24, 1995) was a British biochemist and pre-eminent authority on the history of Chinese science. He pioneered the Western academic recognition of China's scientific past with the ongoing, monumental Science and Civilisation in China Series (SCC, also known as History of Science in China in some Asian sources). This encyclopaedic opus magum revealed the historical development of Chinese science. Needham's Grand Question was raised about stagnation of China's technological development. December 9 is the 343rd day (344th in leap years) of the year in the Gregorian calendar. ... 1900 is a common year starting on Monday. ... March 24 is the 83rd day of the year in the Gregorian Calendar (84th in Leap years). ... 1995 was a common year starting on Sunday of the Gregorian calendar. ... Biochemistry is the chemistry of life. ...


Needham was the only child of a Scottish family in London: his father was a doctor and his mother, Alicia Adelaïde Needham née Montgomery (1863-1945) was a composer and music teacher. Needham studied at Cambridge University, received his bachelor's degree in 1921, master's degree in January 1925 and doctorate in October 1925. After graduation, he worked in F.G. Hopkins's laboratory at Gonville and Caius College, Cambridge, specialising in embryology and morphogenesis. Scotland (Alba in Scottish Gaelic) is a country in northwest Europe and a constituent nation of the United Kingdom. ... St. ... A composer is a person who writes music. ... Wikibooks Wikiversity has more about this subject: School of Music Look up Music in Wiktionary, the free dictionary Wikisource, as part of the 1911 Encyclopedia Wikiproject, has original text related to this article: Music Wikicities has a wiki about Music: Music Music City : a collaborative music database All Music Guide... REDIRECT [1] ... A bachelors degree is usually an undergraduate academic degree awarded for a course or major that generally lasts three or four years. ... 1921 was a common year starting on Saturday (see link for calendar). ... A masters degree is an academic degree usually awarded for completion of a postgraduate or graduate course of one to three years in duration. ... 1925 was a common year starting on Thursday (link will take you to calendar). ... 1925 was a common year starting on Thursday (link will take you to calendar). ... Full name Gonville and Caius College Motto - Named after Edmund Gonville & John Caius Previous names Gonville Hall (1348), Gonville & Caius (1557) Established 1348 Sister College Brasenose College Master Neil McKendrick (Lent 2006: Sir Christopher Hum) Location Trinity St Undergraduates 468 Graduates 291 Homepage Boatclub Gonville and Caius College, Cambridge, generally... Embryology is the subdivision of developmental biology that studies embryos and their development. ... Morphogenesis (from the Greek morphê shape and genesis creation) is one of three fundamental aspects of developmental biology along with the control of cell growth and cellular differentiation. ...


Three Chinese scientists came to work with Needham in 1936: Lu Gwei-djen, Wang Ying-lai, and Chen Shi-chang. Lu (1904 - 1991), daughter of a Nanjingese pharmacist, taught Needham Classical Chinese. This ignited Needham's interest in China's technological and scientific past. Nanjing (Chinese: 南京; pinyin: ; Wade-Giles: Nan-ching; Postal System Pinyin: Nanking), is the capital of Chinas Jiangsu province and a city with a prominent place in Chinese history and culture. ... Classical Chinese or Literary Chinese (文言, pinyin: wényán, literal meaning: literary language or 古文, literal: ancient written language) is a traditional style of written Chinese prose using grammar and vocabulary very different from any modern spoken form of Chinese. ...


Under the Royal Society's direction, Needham was the director of the Sino-British Science Co-operation Office in Chongqing from 1942 to 1946, collaborating with the historian Wang Ling and solidifying his passion for Chinese scientific history. He also met numerous Chinese scholars including painter Wu Zuoren, and travelled to sites in western China including Dunhuang and Yunnan. He also visited educational institutions, from which large amounts of references and materials were collected, which would aid his editing of the Science and Civilisation in China Series. The Royal Society of London for the Improvement of Natural Knowledge, known simply as the Royal Society, is claimed to be the oldest learned society still in existence. ... Chongqing (Simplified Chinese: 重庆; Traditional Chinese: 重慶; pinyin: ; Wade-Giles: Chung-ching; Postal System Pinyin: Chungking; literally Double Celebration) is the largest and most populous of the Peoples Republic of Chinas four provincial-level municipalities, and the only one in the less densely populated western half of China. ... This article is about the year. ... 1946 was a common year starting on Tuesday. ... A painter is a person who paints woodwork, walls, etc. ... Dunhuang (Chinese: 敦煌) is a city located in an oasis in the Gansu province, China. ... Yunnan (Simplified Chinese: 云南; Traditional Chinese: 雲南; pinyin: ) is a province of the Peoples Republic of China, located in the far southwestern corner of the country. ...


After two years' tenure as the first head of the Natural Science division at UNESCO in Paris, France - indeed, it was Needham who insisted that Science should be included in the organisation's mandate - he returned to Gonville and Caius College in 1948 when Cambridge University Press partially funded his Science and Civilisation in China series. He devoted much energy to the history of Chinese science until his retirement in 1990, even though he continued to teach biochemistry until 1966. He also supported and actually signed the unfounded Chinese communist claims of American biological warfare as an inspector from 1952 to 1953 in North Korea during the Korean War. UNESCO logo The United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization, commonly known as UNESCO, is a specialized agency of the United Nations system established in 1946. ... The Eiffel Tower has become the symbol of Paris throughout the world. ... The headquarters of the Cambridge University Press, in Trumpington Street, Cambridge. ... 1990 is a common year starting on Monday of the Gregorian calendar. ... 1966 was a common year starting on Saturday (link goes to calendar) // Events January January 1 - In a coup, Colonel Jean-Bédel Bokassa ousts president David Dacko and takes over the Central African Republic. ... Biological warfare, also known as germ warfare, is the use of any organism (bacteria, virus or other disease-causing organism) or toxin found in nature, as a weapon of war. ... 1952 - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia /**/ @import /skins-1. ... 1953 is a common year starting on Thursday. ... The Korean War (Korean: 한국전쟁/韓國戰爭), from June 25, 1950 to July 27, 1953, was a conflict between North Korea and South Korea. ...


The Needham Research Institute in Cambridge, devoted to the study of China's scientific history, was opened in 1987 by Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh. The Needham Research Institute or NRI is one of the worlds leading centres for the study of the history of East Asian science, technology and medicine. ... 1987 is a common year starting on Thursday of the Gregorian calendar. ... HRH The Duke of Edinburgh His Royal Highness The Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh, KG, KT, OM, GBE, AC, QSO, PC, (Philip Mountbatten, formerly Prince Philip of Greece and Denmark) (born 10 June 1921) is the consort of Queen Elizabeth II of the United Kingdom. ...


Needham was first married to Dorothy Moyle (née Moyle, 1896-1987). Two years after Dorothy's death (1989), Needham was re-married to Lu Gwei-djen. He suffered from Parkinson's disease since 1982, and died at the age of 94 at his Cambridge home.


External links

The following links are all in Chinese

  • Xinhua:Today's NRI
  • Papers in the last ten years on Needham and his Grand Question
  • Needham and his early knowledge on Chinese culture
  • Brief introduction of the exhibition in Taipei on "Needham and Chinese science during the Second Sino-Japanese War"
  • Brief biography
  • Tidbits on Needham's daily activities

  Results from FactBites:
 
Reference.com/Encyclopedia/Joseph Needham (625 words)
Needham was the only child of a Scottish family in London: his father was a doctor and his mother, Alicia Adelaïde Needham née Montgomery (1863-1945) was a composer and music teacher.
Under the Royal Society's direction, Needham was the director of the Sino-British Science Co-operation Office in Chongqing from 1942 to 1946, collaborating with the historian Wang Ling and solidifying his passion for Chinese scientific history.
Joseph Needham and the rise of the West
Joseph Needham and the rise of the West (1295 words)
Joseph Needham opened the way, in the West, to academic recognition of the scientific past of China with his encyclopedia Science and Civilisation in China (1954-95).
Joseph Needham was born on 09 December 1900.
Needham received numerous distinctions, among which the Award of the George Sarton Medal of the History of Science Society in 1968, and the Award of the Bernal Prize of the Society for the Social Studies of Science in 1984.
  More results at FactBites »

 
 

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