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The Neutron's ChildrenNuclear Engineers and the Shaping of Identity$
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Sean F. Johnston

Print publication date: 2012

Print ISBN-13: 9780199692118

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: May 2012

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199692118.001.0001

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Conclusions: Careers from the Manhattan Project to Fukushima

Conclusions: Careers from the Manhattan Project to Fukushima

(p.264) 9 Conclusions: Careers from the Manhattan Project to Fukushima
The Neutron's Children

Sean F. Johnston

Oxford University Press

The Anglo-Saxon atom experts, born during wartime secrecy, have always been contentious. The viability of the early ad hoc specialists was disputed; in secure post-war environments, their growing expertise was hidden between the lines of promotional press releases and the archived reports of government and industry. And—less secure and vocal than their cousins, the atomic scientists—they were represented second-hand by their employers and via their contentious products. Constructing a stable identity proved to be a perennial battle. This chapter compares the experiences of nuclear engineers in the USA, UK, and Canada over their first seven decades, focusing on how identities were shaped in distinct political, occupational, and disciplinary environments. It links this work to sociology of the professions, to history of technology, and to cultural history.

Keywords:   jurisdiction, occupation, discipline, profession, disputes, international history, history of technology, sociology of the professions, engineers, scientists, nuclear history

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