Ships are perhaps the most important mode of transportation ever invented. From oar-powered quinqueremes, to steam-powered freighters, to luxury ocean liners such as the Titanic, to aircraft carriers like HMS Queen Elizabeth, throughout history ships have played an integral role in trade, transportation and war.
Today, ships remain the largest and most expensive moving objects on the planet; engineers and designers constantly push the limits of design, creating vessels that continue to challenge newer technologies such as aeroplanes and cars. But for all of our knowledge about ships acquired from movies, photography and literature, most of us never actually see really large ships in real life. Unlike cars, trains and airplanes, the great ships of the world travel in the deep oceans, out of sight and out of mind - until, that is, something goes wrong.
In Ship, Gregory Votolato explores the fiction and the reality of modern ships, the technology that creates them, and the events that can lead to disasters such as the Amoco Cadiz or Exxon Valdez. Votolato delves into the world of the ship, describing the unpredictable and often-hostile environment of the oceans and its weather, the threat of piracy, and the captains and crews responsible for ships at sea.
Ship's broad overview of ship technology and design offers unique insights, and shows how our ideas about ships sometimes do not reflect the reality of these extraordinary products of human creativity. Votolato's book will appeal to dedicated mariners, as well as those who are interested in ships and their social, political and technological impact on our modern world.
About the Author
Gregory Votolato is Lecturer at the Victoria and Albert Museum in London. He is the author of American Design in the Twentieth Century (1998) and Transport Design : A Travel History.
Praise for Gregory Votolato's previous book with Reaktion, Transport Design: 'A serious but accessible look at how comfort, safety, technology, style, economics, customisation and entertainment have affected the way we get from a to b, and how vehicle design has influenced the interiors of our home and work spaces. A bit of a treat.' - riba Journal 'This is a generalist study of the best kind, full of illuminating detail and clearly organized by typologies of land, water and air, within which are subdivisions of different vehicle types. It is split in focus between the designer of the machine and the experience of the passenger, with a pleasingly fetishistic attention to detail that distinguishes transport enthusiasts.' - Journal of Design History 'It is rare that a fresh reconceptualization of the ship comes along, but Gregory Votolato has done so in a trim, well-illustrated effort simply titled Ship ... this is a magnificent little book that will benefit anyone with an interest in ships, from the greenest of greenhorns to the saltiest sea dog. The author should be commended for grappling with novel ways to conceive of ships, and his book is highly recommended.' - Sea History 'Ship, by Gregory Votolato is an essay on the development of the ship over two hundred years, seen from a designer's rather than a mariner's point of view, with stylish illustrations and chunky production values.' - Marine Quarterly 'Traditional maritime historians will find Votolato's survey of ocean-going ships and shipping since the early nineteenth-century both challenging and rewarding ... This is not, however, an encyclopaedic work. It is, rather, a captivating set of lectures, with slides, given by a presenter who is thoroughly informed, well-prepared and always aware of his audience. The presentation moves gracefully from specific instances to measured generalization. Think of the most illuminating talk you ever heard on the history of art; this is what Votolato has done for the history of shipping.' - International Journal of Maritime History 'A fascinating, wide-ranging study on maritime shipping - how ships were constructed in different eras, the services they provided, and the experiences of those who traveled on them. Votolato has a keen eye for historical detail and the importance of technological innovation, and he tells his stories in a graceful and persuasive manner. Anyone interested in the design, construction, and operation of ships and their role in human history will find his book a delight.' - Arthur Donovan, Emeritus Professor of Maritime History, US Merchant Marine Academy, and co-author of a history of container shipping titled The Box That Changed the World.
Number Of Pages: 303
Published: 16th October 2011
Publisher: REAKTION BOOKS
Dimensions (cm): 20.8 x 15.6 x 2.0
Weight (kg): 0.635