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(Introduction): Historical peculiarity and the Order of the Phoenix.

Martin, Joseph D. and Mateos, Gisela and Munns, David P. D. and Suárez-Díaz, Edna (2021) '(Introduction): Historical peculiarity and the Order of the Phoenix.', Historical studies in the natural sciences., 51 (2). pp. 169-178.


This special issue, “Revealing the Michigan Memorial–Phoenix Project,” highlights the Michigan Memorial–Phoenix Project at the University of Michigan, a program of civilian nuclear research established after World War II that also memorialized Michigan’s victims of the two World Wars. It blossomed into a broad-based, multidisciplinary program supporting work pursuing peaceful uses of the atom, understood broadly. It became the basis for sustained interdisciplinary and international collaboration, a conduit for scientific diplomacy, a privileged site for the alliance between the US government and industry, and a pioneer in the education of nuclear engineers. The Phoenix Project was an unusual and highly local phenomenon, but contributors to this issue nevertheless find ways in which it embodied larger trends in the early Cold War. In this introduction, we highlight the multiple dimensions of the Phoenix Project and reflect on the challenges and opportunities posed by writing the history of peculiar entities.

Item Type:Article
Full text:Publisher-imposed embargo
(AM) Accepted Manuscript
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Publisher statement:Published as Martin, Joseph D., Special Issue Introduction: Historical Peculiarity and the Order of the Phoenix, Historical Studies in the Natural Sciences (2021) 51 (2): 169–178. © 2021 by the Regents of the University of California. Copying and permissions notice: Authorization to copy this content beyond fair use (as specified in Sections 107 and 108 of the U. S. Copyright Law) for internal or personal use, or the internal or personal use of specific clients, is granted by the Regents of the University of California for libraries and other users, provided that they are registered with and pay the specified fee via Rightslink® or directly with the Copyright Clearance Center.
Date accepted:21 July 2020
Date deposited:09 September 2020
Date of first online publication:01 April 2021
Date first made open access:No date available

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