Is Science Western in Origin? – C. K. Raju

Read ‘Is Science Western in Origin?’ here


About the booklet: 

Image: Pamphlet

From the backpage

On stock Western history, science originated among the Greeks, and then developed in post-renaissance Europe. This story was fabricated in three phases.

First, during the Crusades, scientific knowledge from across the world, in captured Arabic books, was given a theologically-correct origin by claiming it was all transmitted from the Greeks. The key cases of Euclid (geometry) and Claudius Ptolemy (astronomy)— both concocted figures — are used to illustrate this process.

Second, during the Inquisition, world scientific knowledge was again assigned a theologically-correct origin by claiming it was not transmitted from others, but was “independently rediscovered” by Europeans. The cases of Copernicus and Newton (calculus) illustrate this process of “revolution by rediscovery”.

Third, the appropriated knowledge was reinterpreted and aligned to post-Crusade theology. Colonial and racist historians exploited this, arguing that the (theologically) “correct” version of scientific knowledge (geometry, calculus, etc.) existed only in Europe.

These processes of appropriation continue to this day.


About the author:

C.K. Raju

After a PhD from the Indian Statistical Institute, C. K. Raju taught at Pune University for several years, before joining C-DAC, to play a key role in building the first Indian supercomputer, Param. Currently a Distinguished Professor at Inmantec, Delhi NCR, he is a Visiting Professor at the School of Mathematical Sciences, Universiti Sains Malaysia.

He has authored several books. In Time: Towards a Consistent Theory (Kluwer, 1994) he proposed new (mixed-type functional differential) equations for physics leading to a new understanding of quantum mechanics. In The Eleven Pictures of Time (Sage, 2003) he studied how science, religion and ethics interact through time beliefs, and how Christian theology has penetrated current physics. Cultural Foundations of Mathematics (Pearson Longman, 2007) proposed a new philosophy of mathematics, while presenting evidence to show that the calculus was transmitted to Europe. In Is Science Western in Origin? (Multiversity, 2009) he summarised how, even before racist and colonial historians, the West fabricated history during the religious fanaticism of the Crusades and the Inquisition. Forthcoming is Euclid and Jesus, the story of how theology changed mathematics across two religious wars.

He received the Telesio-Galilei gold medal for 2010 in Hungary, for correcting a major mathematical mistake made by Einstein.