This book is an illustrated anthology of Faraday's writings compiled with commentary by Professor Peter Day, the current Director of the Royal Institution of Great Britain.
Faraday's social origins, his thought processes, his methods of experimentation, and his religion have all been subjects of exhaustive analysis by historians and philosophers of science. One aspect of his work, which gives unique insight into the path by which his career developed, and the way in which his mind worked, appears not to have received much emphasis outside the realm of the academic professionals: namely, his writing.
Throughout his life, from the time when he was a teenage apprentice bookbinder till his final resignation from the Royal Institution due to failing memory. Faraday wrote voluminously and his output took many forms. Apart from letters, Faraday kept journals (both scientific and personal); as a practising scientist, he wrote articles in learned journals: as an adviser to Government and to many other agencies, he wrote reports: as a supremely successful communicator (especially to young people) he left lecture notes and transcripts. All these add life, colour and depth of focus to the stereotypical scientific colossus. Though Faraday's life was largely lived within what might appear to be very narrow geographical confines (just a few miles around 21 Albemarle Street in London's West End), his professional, social and family relationships were extensive and diverse, and his responses to them equally complex; and through all the forms of expression that his multifaceted career required of him, one fact shines clearly. Not only is he in the world first eleven for science; he shows enviablequality as a writer.