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Engineering NatureWater, Development, and the Global Spread of American Environmental Expertise$
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Jessica B. Teisch

Print publication date: 2011

Print ISBN-13: 9780807834435

Published to North Carolina Scholarship Online: July 2014

DOI: 10.5149/9780807878019_teisch

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Conclusion The Common World Destiny

Conclusion The Common World Destiny

Chapter:
(p.179) Conclusion The Common World Destiny
Source:
Engineering Nature
Author(s):

Jessica B. Teisch

Publisher:
University of North Carolina Press
DOI:10.5149/9780807878019_teisch.11

This book concludes by discussing the dream of progress shared by Elwood Mead and other California engineers, which was deeply rooted in the nineteenth century and persisted into the first half of the twentieth. This was, after all, the time that Frederick H. Newell dubbed the Age of the Engineer, the era when the idea of universal progress took on different variations around the world. This vision of progress, based largely on technical innovation and capitalist growth, paid little heed to questions of race, nationality, culture, and history. Instead, engineers such as George Morison believed that progress—in the form of such awe-inspiring creations as railroads, steamships, and telegraph cables—would bring people of all races into contact, break down national divisions, and “finally make the human race a single great whole working intelligently in ways and for ends which we cannot yet understand.”

Keywords:   technical innovation, Elwood Mead, California engineers, Frederick H. Newell, George Morison, universal progress

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