The Ascent of Man

  • Premiered: May 1973
  • Episodes: 13
  • Followers: 8
  • Ended
  • BBC Two
  • Saturday
  • Documentary History


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Season 1
Lower Than the Angels
Episode overview
Air date
May 05, 1973
The following episodes examine intellectual, cultural, and scientific breakthroughs in man's four-million-year evolution. Shows importance of new ideas and how they transcend other .. show full overview
The Harvest of the Seasons
Episode overview
Air date
May 12, 1973
In the long spring following the Ice Ages man develops agriculture and domesticates animals, imposing his will on wild wheat and horses. With the Neolithic cultivators come the mounted .. show full overview
The Grain in the Stone
Episode overview
Air date
May 19, 1973
Man splits a stone and reassembles the pieces to build a wall, a cathedral, a city. This program is about man, the architect, builder, and sculptor. Shots of Greek temples of Paestum, .. show full overview
The Hidden Structure
Episode overview
Air date
May 26, 1973
From ancient Oriental metallurgy, through mystical alchemy this program traces the roots of chemistry. Shang bronze craftsmen and Samurai sword smiths are the starting point for a .. show full overview
Music of the Spheres
Episode overview
Air date
Jun 02, 1973
Program covers the evolution of math. Pythagoras, father of Greek math, considered numbers the language of nature. Follows spread of Greek ideas through the Islamic Empire to Moorish .. show full overview
The Starry Messenger
Episode overview
Air date
Jun 09, 1973
Studies man's attempts to map the forces which move the planets. The static nature of South American astronomy is contrasted with ideas of Renaissance Europe. Traces the origins of the .. show full overview
The Majestic Clockwork
Episode overview
Air date
Jun 16, 1973
Newton and Einstein, the two giants of physics, imposed great systems of order on the world. This production illustrates the revolution that occurred when Einstein's theory of relativity turned Newton's elegant description of the universe inside out.
The Drive for Power
Episode overview
Air date
Jun 23, 1973
Program covers the industrial and political revolutions of the 18th century. Forces of nature were harnessed and the basics of political power shifted. Bronowski argues that in man's .. show full overview
The Ladder of Creation
Episode overview
Air date
Jun 30, 1973
From the countryside of Wales to the jungles of the Amazon, follows the stories of Alfred Russell Wallace and Charles Darwin who had the same idea simultaneously - evolution by natural .. show full overview
World Within World
Episode overview
Air date
Jul 07, 1973
In the vaults of ancient Polish salt mines Bronowski embarks on a journey to the hidden world inside the atom. He traces the history of the men and the ideas that made 20th century physics the greatest achievement of the human imagination.
Knowledge or Certainty
Episode overview
Air date
Jul 14, 1973
Bronowski's statement on information and responsibility's a moral dilemma to scientists. Principle of certainty in physics applies to all knowledge. Examines implications of bombing .. show full overview
Generation Upon Generation
Episode overview
Air date
Jul 21, 1973
Math and physics brought revolution to man's ideas of life. From Mendel's work to discoveries of today, Bronowski unravels complex code of human inheritance. Sees sex as an instrument of .. show full overview
1x13 Show finale
The Long Childhood
Episode overview
Air date
Jul 28, 1973
In this final program Bronowski - poet, playwright, mathematician, philosopher - draws together many threads of the series. He takes stock of man's complex, sometimes precarious, ascent. .. show full overview

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