A Prehistory of Polymer Science

  • Gary Patterson Carnegie Mellon University

Part of the SpringerBriefs in Molecular Science book series (BRIEFSMOLECULAR, volume 2)

Also part of the SpringerBriefs in History of Chemistry book sub series (BRIESFHISTCHEM, volume 2)

Table of contents

  1. Front Matter
    Pages i-ix
  2. Gary Patterson
    Pages 1-2
  3. Gary Patterson
    Pages 3-24
  4. Back Matter
    Pages 49-49

About this book


Polymer science is now an active and thriving community of scientists, engineers and technologists, but there was a time, not so long ago, when there was no such community. The prehistory of polymer science helps to provide key insights into current issues and historical problems. The story is divided into an ancient period, from Greek times to the creation of the molecular consensus, a nascent period, from Dalton to Kekule to van’t Hoff, and a period of paradigm formation and controversy, from Staudinger to Mark to Carothers. The prehistory concludes with an account of the epochal 1935 Discussion of the Faraday Society on “Polymerization.” After this meeting an active community engaged in trying to solve the central problems defined by the discussions.


Carothers Development of Macromolecules Faraday Society Polymerization History Polymer Science Macromolecular paradigm Mark Staudinger

Authors and affiliations

  • Gary Patterson Carnegie Mellon University
    • 1
  1. 1., Department of ChemistryCarnegie Mellon UniversityPittsburghUSA

Bibliographic information