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Electrified Sheep

Glass-eating Scientists, Nuking the Moon, and More Bizarre Experiments

Alex Boese

Thomas Dunne Books

"Perfect summertime reading—preferably with a friend nearby who can be constantly interrupted with unsettling facts.” —Daily Mail (UK )

Benjamin Franklin was a pioneering scientist, leader of the Enlightenment, and a founding father of the United States. But perhaps less well known is that he was also the first person to use mouth-to-mouth resuscitation on an electric-shock victim. Odder still, it was actually mouth-to-beak resuscitation on a hen that he himself had shocked.

Welcome to some of the weirdest and most wonderful experiments ever conducted in the name of science. Filled with stories of science gone strange, Electrified Sheep is packed with eccentric characters, irrational obsessions, and extreme experiments. Watch as scientists attempt to nuke the moon, wince at the doctor who performs a self-appendectomy, and catch the faint whiff of singed wool from an electrified sheep.

BOOK EXCERPTS

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Electrified Sheep
CHAPTER ONEElectric BodiesIn the ghostly subatomic world, an electron flickers in its orbit around an atomic nucleus. Then, from out of the empty void beyond the atom, comes the distant tug of an attractive force. The electron twitches and leaps, spanning distances billions of times greater than its own size until it comes to rest again around another atom. Out of such microcosmic forces emerges the human-scale phenomenon of electricity. We feel it as an electric shock that jabs our finger, or we see it as lightning in the sky. The mastery of electricity has been arguably the
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REVIEWS

Praise for Electrified Sheep

Praise for Electrified Sheep
 
"A strangely compelling look at some of the bizarre, outlandish and peculiar experiments that have been attempted in the name of science." —Penny Le Couteur, coauthor of Napoleon's Buttons: How 17 Molecules Changed History
 
"Electrified Sheep quite brilliantly explains some of the more bizarre experiments performed in the name of scientific discovery with lashings of intellectual humour and a surprising amount of quality storytelling." —Chemistry World (UK)
 
“Perfect summertime reading--preferably with a friend nearby who can be constantly interrupted with unsettling facts.” —The Daily Mail (UK )

"Laugh out loud funny.” —Publishers Weekly

“Boese’s fascination with obscure details makes the book frightfully interesting. It’s packed with enough material to challenge any would-be science-fiction writer, and proves truth in a lab coat is stranger than fiction.” —The Saturday Evening Post
 
“Boese, a historian of science, once again takes readers on a romp through some of the weirder detours on the road to scientific progress. Here, short, lively sections follow groups of mad scientists in a range of fields, from nuclear physics to developmental psychology.”—Boston Globe
 
“Delves into the extremes some will reach for the sake of science…. Mr. Boese reveals just how far some will go to appease their empirical curiosities.”—Pittsburgh Post-Gazette
 
Praise for Elephants on Acid
 
"The short, witty, ceaselessly amusing entries should delight anyone with a healthy sense of morbid curiousity." --Publishers Weekly
 
"Very well researched and delivered in an engaging, breezy, wink-wink tone similar to thtat of Mark Leyner and Billy Goldberg's Why Do Men Have Nipples?...One of the finest science/history bathroom books of all time." --Kirkus Reviews

Reviews from Goodreads

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ABOUT THE AUTHOR

  • Alex Boese

  • ALEX BOESE holds an M.A. in the history of science from the University of California, San Diego. Boese is the author of Elephants on Acid and Hippo Eats Dwarf and the creator of museumofhoaxes.com. He lives near San Diego, California.
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Electrified Sheep

Glass-eating Scientists, Nuking the Moon, and More Bizarre Experiments

Alex Boese

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FROM THE PUBLISHER

Thomas Dunne Books

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