Document Detail

The paradoxes of patenting at General Electric: Isador Ladoff's journey from Siberian exile to the heart of corporate capitalism.
MedLine Citation:
PMID:  22448541     Owner:  NLM     Status:  In-Process    
Isador Ladoff (1857-1918) worked briefly in the General Electric Company Research Laboratory, from 1901 to 1903. Since he was not employed to invent, Ladoff maintained that he, not the company, owned his invention of a new arc lamp electrode, eventually winning his case on appeal in 1911. The conduct and course of this patent litigation are examined in the light of Ladoff's remarkable life as a prisoner of the czar in Siberia before his escape to the United States in 1891 and as a socialist activist and writer thereafter. In showing that Ladoff's socialist principles activated his struggle with GE, the essay brings out the ironies of his defense of individualism against the incipient socialism of the laboratory supposedly espoused by officials of the company. The case is interesting in relation to the shift from the ideology, and the reality, of heroic individual invention to that of corporate invention in U.S. industrial research. That shift in turn was a crucial landmark in the longer history of the place of science in negotiation and contest about the relationship between creativity and intellectual property.
David Philip Miller
Publication Detail:
Type:  Journal Article; Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't    
Journal Detail:
Title:  Isis; an international review devoted to the history of science and its cultural influences     Volume:  102     ISSN:  0021-1753     ISO Abbreviation:  Isis     Publication Date:  2011 Dec 
Date Detail:
Created Date:  2012-03-27     Completed Date:  -     Revised Date:  -    
Medline Journal Info:
Nlm Unique ID:  2985182R     Medline TA:  Isis     Country:  United States    
Other Details:
Languages:  eng     Pagination:  634-58     Citation Subset:  IM; QIS    
Program in History and Philosophy of Science, School of History and Philosophy, University of New South Wales, Sydney, NSW 2052, Australia.
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