Timothy Shanahan
Loyola Marymount University
THE DANISH chemist and physicist Hans Christian Oersted (1777-I 851) is recognized by historians of science primarily as the discoverer of electromagnetism. His experiments in 1820 demonstrated a definite lawlike relationship between electrical and magnetic phenomena. The quite general question of whether there is in science such a thing as a “logic of discovery” can in this case be given a more precise formulation. Why was Oersted, rather than another of the many scientists interested in electricity and magnetism in the nineteenth century, the fortunate one to have made the discovery, and thus to have his name immortalized in the history of science? What events, ideas, or methods were responsible for the discovery?
Keywords Oersted  electromagnetism  naturphilosophie  Kant
Categories (categorize this paper)
DOI 10.1016/0039-3681(89)90009-5
Edit this record
Mark as duplicate
Export citation
Find it on Scholar
Request removal from index
Revision history

Download options

PhilArchive copy

Upload a copy of this paper     Check publisher's policy     Papers currently archived: 70,163
External links

Setup an account with your affiliations in order to access resources via your University's proxy server
Configure custom proxy (use this if your affiliation does not provide a proxy)
Through your library

References found in this work BETA

Speculation in Physics: The Theory and Practice of "Naturphilosophie".Barry Gower - 1973 - Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part A 3 (4):301.
Ampère, the Etherians, and the Oersted Connexion.Kenneth L. Caneva - 1980 - British Journal for the History of Science 13 (2):121-138.

Add more references

Citations of this work BETA

Physics and Naturphilosophie: A Reconnaissance.Kenneth L. Caneva - 1997 - History of Science 35 (1):35-106.
Philosophy and the Sciences After Kant.Michela Massimi - 2009 - Royal Institute of Philosophy Supplement 65:275-311.
A Debate On Magnetic Current: The Troubled Einstein–Ehrenhaft Correspondence.Gildo Magalhães Santos - 2011 - British Journal for the History of Science 44 (3):371-400.

Add more citations

Similar books and articles

Oersted's Discovery.Joseph Agassi - 1963 - History and Theory 2:67-74.
Classical Electromagnetism in a Nutshell.Anupam Garg - 2012 - Princeton University Press.


Added to PP index

Total views
65 ( #176,197 of 2,506,520 )

Recent downloads (6 months)
1 ( #416,791 of 2,506,520 )

How can I increase my downloads?


My notes