Hahn, Roger 1932-

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Hahn, Roger 1932-

PERSONAL: Born January 5, 1932, in Paris, France; immigrated to the United States, 1941; naturalized, 1953; son of Jean (now John) Pierre (a businessman) and Therese Hahn; married Ellen Isabel Leibovici (a musician), September 11, 1955; children: Elisabeth Louise, Sophie Anne. Education: Harvard University, B.A. (magna cum laude), 1953, M.A.T., 1954; Ecole Pratique des Hautes Etudes, Paris, Diploma, 1955; Cornell University, Ph.D., 1962. Religion: Jewish.

ADDRESSES: Home—Berkeley, CA. Office—Department of History, University of California, 3229 Dwinelle Hall, Berkeley, CA 94720-2550. E-mail[email protected].

CAREER: Writer, educator. University of Delaware, Newark, instructor in history, 1960-61; University of California, Berkeley, instructor, 1961-62, assistant professor, 1962-68, associate professor of history, 1968—. Special assistant to director of Bancroft Library, Berkeley. Military service: U.S. Army, 1955-57.

MEMBER: American Historical Association, History of Science Society (member of council), American Association for the Advancement of Science (fellow; member of council), Society for French Historical Studies, American Society for Eighteenth-Century Studies, Academie Internationale d’Histoire des Sciences (corresponding member).

AWARDS, HONORS: Fulbright scholar in Paris, 1954-55; National Science Foundation fellow, 1964-65; Book Prize award, American Historical Association, Pacific Coast branch, 1972; American Council of Learned Societies fellow, 1973-74.


L’Hydrodynamique au XVIIIè siècle, Palais de la Decouverte (Paris, France), 1965.

Laplace as a Newtonian Scientist, William A. Clark Library (Los Angeles, CA), 1967.

The Anatomy of a Scientific Institution: The Paris Academy of Sciences (1666-1803), University of California Press (Berkeley, CA), 1971.

A Bibliography of Quantitative Studies on Science and Its History, University of California Press (Berkeley, CA), 1980.

Calendar of the Correspondence of Pierre Simon Laplace, University of California Press (Berkeley, CA), 1982.

The New Calendar of the Correspondence of Pierre Simon Laplace, University of California Press (Berkeley, CA), 1994.

Le systèmme du monde Pierre Simon Laplace: Un it-inéraire dans la science, Gallimard (Paris, France), 2004, published as Pierre Simon Laplace, 1749-1827: A Determined Scientist, Harvard University Press (Cambridge, MA), 2005.

Advisory editor, Isis, History of Science, Social Studies of Science, and Eighteenth-Century Studies. Contributor of articles to professional journals and contributor of essays to scholarly books.

SIDELIGHTS: Roger Hahn is a professor of history at the University of California at Berkeley and the author of numerous works on the history of French science, focusing specifically on the scientists, Pierre Simon Laplace. Considered one of the greatest scientists, Laplace has been termed the “French Newton.” Though he died a century later than the English scientist, Laplace is best known for extending and completing the work of Newton. As renowned a mathematician as he was a scientist, Laplace managed to navigate the difficult waters of French politics, with a career that “spanned the end of the Old Regime, Revolution, Empire, and Restoration,” as Janis Langins noted in the Canadian Journal of History. Among his many other achievements were making accessible to the public the advancements of science. Additionally, as Langins further noted, “Laplace is known not only for his celestial mechanics, but also for his work in physics, his collaboration with Lavoisier on calorimetry, and the theory of probability.” Langins termed Hahn’s biography of the scientist an “excellent book,” observing that the author “succeeds in giving us an excellent feel, not only for Laplace’s science and mathematics, but also for his philosophy and social views.” Langins concluded that Hahn “deserves thanks from historians for the insights he has provided into this determined scientist and apostle of determinism.”



American Historical Review, October, 2006, Martin S. Staum, review of Pierre Simon Laplace, 1749-1827: A Determined Scientist.

Canadian Journal of History, March 22, 2006, Janis Langins, review of Pierre Simon Laplace, 1749-1827, p. 120.

Choice, May, 2006, L.I. Morgan, review of Pierre Simon Laplace, 1749-1827, p. 1624.

Isis, September, 2005, I. Grattan-Guinness, review of Le systéme du monde Pierre Simon Laplace: Un it-inéraire dans la science, p. 446.

London Review of Books, December 14, 2006,“Flowery Regions of Algebra,” p. 35.

Physics Today, September, 2006, Thomas L. Hankins, review of Pierre Simon Laplace, 1749-1827, p. 62.

Technology and Culture, January, 2007, Andre Wakefield, review of Pierre Simon Laplace, 1749-1827, p. 221.

Times Higher Education Supplement, April 7, 2006,“Diligent Observations of a Universe Ruled by Newton and Napoleon,” p. 22.


Department of History, University of California at Berkeley,http://history.berkeley.edu/ (August 27, 2007), “Roger Hahn, Professor of the Graduate School.”

French Studies Program, University of California at Berkeley,http://ies.berkeley.edu/ (August 27, 2007), “Professor Roger Hahn.”*