J. E. Gordon

In “Structures” (published in 1978), readers are offered a comprehensive exploration of the underlying principles that govern the stability and integrity of various structures that populate our world. From the towering achievements of human engineering like skyscrapers and airplanes to the natural elegance of biological forms such as the horse’s body, this book elucidates the fundamental physical laws that ensure these structures remain upright and functional.

One of the most compelling themes within “Structures” is the delicate balance that keeps these frameworks from collapsing. The book presents a sobering reminder of our built environment’s inherent vulnerabilities and the catastrophic consequences that can ensue from overlooking the minute, yet critical, aspects of structural design and maintenance. Through engaging narratives and case studies, the author demystifies the complex calculations and scientific endeavors that remain largely invisible yet are essential for our safety and well-being.

At its core, “Structures” pays homage to the brilliant minds of scientists and engineers who dedicate their lives to understanding and applying the laws of physics to ensure the durability and safety of both man-made and natural structures. These individuals operate behind the scenes, employing their expert knowledge and unwavering attention to detail to protect us from the potential disasters that could arise from structural failures.

Despite the potentially dense subject matter, “Structures” is remarkably accessible. The author skillfully breaks down intricate scientific concepts into understandable segments, making the world of structural engineering fascinating for both professionals in the field and lay readers alike. The book serves as an enlightening read that enriches one’s appreciation for the unseen work that goes into maintaining the physical structures that surround us.

Structures” (1978) is more than just a physics book about the physical laws governing our environment; it’s a celebration of human ingenuity and a call to never underestimate the complexity and importance of structural safety. With its engaging narrative and insightful analysis, this book stands as a testament to the critical value of science and engineering in our daily lives. Whether you’re a budding engineer, an architect, or simply someone curious about the world around you, “Structures” offers a compelling glimpse into the unseen forces that shape and sustain our physical world.