Events in history of science, technology and medicine at or near member institutions or within 75 miles of Philadelphia


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December 2, 2015

Emily Abel, UCLA-Fielding School of Public Health

Before Hospice: Nurses Study Dying Patients, 1969-1971

Barbara Bates Center for the Study of the History of Nursing, Seminar Series (Philadelphia, PA)

December 3, 2015

Kapil Raj, Centre Alexandre-Koyré, EHESS

Connecting Chronologies, Constructing Historical Anthropology: William Jones in Calcutta and his Legitimation of Empire

South Asia Center, UPenn; Consortium for HSTM (Philadelphia, PA)

December 4, 2015

K. Raj (EHESS), D. Ali (UPenn), P. Gomez (UWisc., Madison), E. Lean (Columbia), C. Mavhunga (MIT), J. Radin (Yale)

Workshop: Problematizing the Local, in Global Histories of Science

South Asia Center, UPenn; Consortium for HSTM (Philadelphia, PA)

December 16, 2015

Henry Cowles, Yale University

How the Other Half Thinks: Human Science in the Gilded Age

New York History of Science Lecture Series (New York, NY)

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Simon Flexner (1863-1946)
Image courtesy of the American Philosophical Society

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Working Groups

April 13, 2015


December 1, 2015

History and Theory

The group will discuss Ch. 1 of Johannes Fabian, Time and the Other: How Anthropology Makes its Object (Columbia, 1983); Ch. 6 of David Carr, Time, Narrative, and History (Indiana University Press, 1991); and John Zammito, “Koselleck’s Philosophy of Historical Time(s) and the Practice of History,” History and Theory 43 (2004): 124-35. (We are re-posting the Zammito, since we didn’t get a chance to finish discussing it last time.)

December 2, 2015

Earth and Environmental Sciences

The group will discuss a recent forum on “Technology, Ecology, and Human Health since 1850,” Environmental History 20 (2015): 710-804. Participants can choose to read some or all of the essays. The group’s conveners (Benson, Roberts, and Vetter) will introduce specific themes and topics relevant to their own work to instigate the conversation.

December 3, 2015

Science Beyond the West

No regular session this month, but members are invited to attend a 2-day lecture and workshop on "The Local and the Global in History of Science," Dec. 3rd - Dec. 4th in Philadelphia, PA, featuring guest speaker and participant Kapil Raj (EHESS, Paris). The lecture and workshop are organized by Projit Mukharji and co-sponsored by the South Asia Center at UPenn, as well as the Consortium for HSTM. Read more and RSVP here.

December 3, 2015

Biological Sciences

The theme for our next meeting will be migration and the biological sciences with an eye to exploring some exciting recent literature. Lijing Jiang at Nanyang Technological University will lead the discussion of two papers centering on two kinds of biological sciences, and a third, which provides us with relevant insights on Chinese/American Scientists. Readings: Lijing Jiang, “Retouching the Past with Living Things: Indigenous Species, Tradition, and Biological Research in Republican China, 1918–1937” (manuscript). Lisa Onaga, “Ray Wu as Fifth Business: Deconstructing Collective Memory in the History of DNA Sequencing.” Std. Hist. Phil. Biol. Biomed. Sci. (2014) 46: 1-14. Background Reading: Zuoyue Wang, “Transnational Science and the Cold War. The Case of Chinese/American Scientists.” Isis 2010 101: 367-377.

December 9, 2015

History and Philosophy of Science

This semester, the group will read Theodore Arabatzis's book Representing Electrons: A Biographical Approach to Theoretical Entities (Chicago, 2005). Please obtain your own copy and read chapters 6, 7, and 8 for this meeting.

December 10, 2015

Early Sciences


December 15, 2015


Jennifer Alexander of the University of Minnesota will introduce her article, “Technological Critique and the Founding of the Technology and Social Justice Movement:  Jacques Ellul at the World Council of Churches, Amsterdam, 1948.”

December 17, 2015

Physical Sciences

Ruth Rand, Consortium for HSTM and UPenn, TBA

December 18, 2015

Medicine and Health

Heidi Knoblauch of Bard College will join the group to discuss her paper, “Collecting Patients: Clinical Photographs, Record Keeping, and Privacy in the United States, 1862-1939.”

February 3, 2016

Human Sciences