Who were the men who led America's first voyages into space? Soldiers? Daredevils? The public sometimes imagined them that way: military men or hot-shot pilots without the capacity for doubt, fear, or worry.
Instead, the early astronauts were something else: a new kind of 'organization man,' calm, calculating, and attuned to the politics and celebrity of the Space Race.
Through archival documents, popular culture, and interviews with the astronauts themselves, the book examines the origins of a new American profession and follows it through the last Moon landing and the creation of the Space Shuttle.
Matthew H. Hersch is a Lecturer in Science, Technology and Society in the Department of History and Sociology of Science at the University of Pennsylvania, where he received his PhD. During his doctoral studies, he held a HSS-NASA Fellowship in the History of Space Science and a Guggenheim Fellowship at the Smithsonian Institution's National Air and Space Museum, and most recently served as the Postdoctoral Teaching Fellow for the Aerospace History Project of the Huntington-USC Institute on California and the West.