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《Studies In The History of Natural Sciences》 2004-04
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The Early Diffusion of Cybernetics in China (1929-1966)

PENG Yongdong(Institute for the History of Science ,CAS, Beijing ,100010,China)  
This thesis illustrates the early diffusion of cybernetics in China. It is based on an analysis of three successive stages in history, namely, the cooperation between Norbert Wiener and Chinese scholar Li Yurong(1929-1949) , the acceptance of the concept of cybernetics in China (1949-1955) , and the discussion and further studies of cybernetics by scholars at home (1956-1966) since PRC's Twelve-Year Plan for the Development of Science and Technology was made. The focus is put on the rising and evolution of cybernetic studies in China between 1956-1966. Two substantive driving forces have contributed to the successful diffusion of cybernetics in China if philosophic problems of cybernetics are considered first; one came from introductions to the works concerning Russian references and translations, another came from Chinese researchers in the circle of engineering theory under the guidance of H. S. Tsien and his Engineering Cybernetics, especially in terms of automatization, aviation and computers studies. The thesis also attempts to prove that the early diffusion of cybernetics, which took place in a particular social-political circumstance in China in 1950-60s,had pared the way for the coming flourish in the studies on"Three Theories" ( cybernetics , information theory,and system theory)right after Cultural Revolution. Finally,for a better understanding of the diffusion of cybernetics in China, some thoughts on the relations among science, society, and politics are given.
【CateGory Index】: N092
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