Oxford Portraits in Science

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Oxford Portraits in Science is a collection of biographies of famous scientists for young adults edited by the Harvard University astronomer Owen Gingerich.[1] Each book portrays the life and personality of an eminent scientist, and the thought processes by which they made their discoveries.

The series is notable as an example of the Sobel effect - an interest in popular accounts of scientific history and biography, stimulated by the success of the book Longitude written by journalist Dava Sobel. Some works in this series have also been written by science journalists as well as scientists and science historians.[2]


Title Date: Author: ISBN
Bell Alexander Graham Bell: Making Connections 1996 Pasachoff Naomi Pasachoff 9780195099089
Babbage Charles Babbage and the Engines of Perfection 1999 Collier Bruce Collier 9780195089974
Darwin Charles Darwin and the Evolution of Revolution 1996 Stefoff Rebecca Stefoff 9780195089967
Fermi Enrico Fermi and the Revolutions of Modern Physics 1999 Cooper Dan Cooper 9780195117622
Rutherford Ernest Rutherford and the Explosion of Atoms 2003 Heilbron John L. Heilbron 9780195123784
Galilei Galileo Galilei: First Physicist 1999 MacLachlan James MacLachlan 9780195093421
Mendel Gregor Mendel 9780195122268
Newton Isaac Newton 9780195092240
Pavlov Ivan Pavlov 9780195105148
Kepler Johannes Kepler 9780195116809
Pauling Linus Pauling and the Chemistry of Life 1998 Hager Tom Hager 9780195108538
Pasteur Louis Pasteur and the Hidden World of Microbes 2001 Robbins Louise E. Robbins 9780195122275
Mead Margaret Mead: Coming of Age in America 1999 Mark Joan Mark 9780195116793
Curie Marie Curie and the Science of Radioactivity 1997 Pasachoff Naomi Pasachoff 9780195120110
Faraday Michael Faraday: Physics and Faith 2001 Russell Colin A. Russell 9780195117639
Copernicus Nicolaus Copernicus 9780195161731
Harvey William Harvey and the Mechanics of the Heart 9780195120493


  1. ^ "Media review", The Chemical Educator, 11 (3), 2006 
  2. ^ Paola Govoni (March 2005), "Historians of science and the "Sobel Effect"" (PDF), Journal of Science Communication