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History of Science; An Annual Review of Literature, Research and Teaching

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https://read.qxmd.com/read/30661410/-slash-and-burn-ecology-field-science-as-land-use
#1
Megan Raby
Historians of science can benefit from thinking more deeply about land. Scholarly emphasis on the geographies of scientific knowledge has become pervasive since the "spatial turn" of the late 1990s. At the same time, the history of science has increasingly intersected with environmental history. Despite these growing connections, historians of science have been slow to embrace a core concern of environmental history: land. While space and place now have a rich literature in the historiography of science, land appears in histories of science in more scattered, incidental ways - largely as a place where science may occur or be applied...
January 21, 2019: History of Science; An Annual Review of Literature, Research and Teaching
https://read.qxmd.com/read/30574798/-technologies-of-the-law-law-as-a-technology
#2
Mario Biagioli, Marius Buning
Historians of science and technology and STS practitioners have always taken intellectual property very seriously but, with some notable exceptions, they have typically refrained from looking "into" it. There is mounting evidence, however, that they can open up the black box of IP as effectively as they have done for the technosciences, enriching their discipline while making significant contributions to legal studies. One approach is to look at the technologies through which patent law construes its object - the invention - in specific settings and periods by examining procedures, classifications, archives, models, repositories, patent specifications (in both their linguistic and pictorial dimensions), and the highly specialized language of patent claims...
December 21, 2018: History of Science; An Annual Review of Literature, Research and Teaching
https://read.qxmd.com/read/30526073/marconi-s-legal-battles-discursive-textual-and-material-entanglements
#3
Stathis Arapostathis
The paper offers an account of how the meaning of the concept of "invention" and "inventorship" is not stable and predefined but rather constructed during patent disputes. In particular, I look at how that construction takes place in adversarial settings like the courts of law. I argue that key notions of intellectual property law like invention and inventorship are as constructed as technoscientific claims are in laboratories. Courts should thus be seen as sites of construction through processes framed by specific discursive and evidentiary technologies like bureaucratic paperwork, literary technologies, historiographic accounts of inventorship, and models of artifacts and devices...
December 10, 2018: History of Science; An Annual Review of Literature, Research and Teaching
https://read.qxmd.com/read/30514129/-simple-clear-and-easily-understood-by-the-farmer%C3%A2-on-expert-layman-communication-in-american-soil-science-1920s-50s
#4
Jan Arend
This article presents a case study of how American soil scientists encountered the increasing demands to prove the social utility of their scientific work in the first half of the twentieth century and how this influenced the professional rivalry and competition among them. Previous historical studies of agricultural science in the period have not overlooked the increasing demands for applicability that agricultural scientists were faced with at the time. However, in describing the response of agricultural scientists to these demands, research has focused on the content of their scientific work, that is, their methods, empirical interests, and theories...
December 4, 2018: History of Science; An Annual Review of Literature, Research and Teaching
https://read.qxmd.com/read/30501510/phases-of-physics-in-j-d-forbes-dissertation-sixth-for-the-encyclopaedia-britannica-1856
#5
Isobel Falconer
This paper takes James David Forbes' Encyclopaedia Britannica entry, Dissertation Sixth, as a lens to examine physics as a cognitive, practical, and social enterprise. Forbes wrote this survey of eighteenth- and nineteenth-century mathematical and physical sciences between 1852 and 1856, when British "physics" was at a pivotal point in its history, situated between a field identified by its mathematical methods - originating in France - and a discipline identified by its university laboratory institutions...
December 3, 2018: History of Science; An Annual Review of Literature, Research and Teaching
https://read.qxmd.com/read/30474405/university-physicists-and-the-origins-of-the-national-physical-laboratory-1830-1900
#6
Lee T Macdonald
Traditionally, historians have taken it for granted that Britain's National Physical Laboratory (NPL) was created as the result of demands from a "professional" body of university-based physicists for a state-funded scientific institution. Yet paying detailed attention to the history of the NPL's originating institution, Kew Observatory, shows that the story is not so clear-cut. Starting in the 1850s, Kew Observatory was partly a center for testing meteorological instruments and other scientific equipment in return for fees...
November 26, 2018: History of Science; An Annual Review of Literature, Research and Teaching
https://read.qxmd.com/read/30453784/socially-skilling-toil-new-artisanship-in-papermaking-in-late-chos%C3%A5-n-korea
#7
Jung Lee
In pre-modern Korea, paper was renowned for its white glossy surface and cloth-like strength, becoming an important item in both tributary exchanges and private trade. The unique material of the tak tree and related technical innovations, including toch'im, the repeated beating of just-produced paper that provides sizing and fulling effects, were crucial to this fame. However, the scholar-officials who integrated papermaking into the state production system in order to meet administrative and tributary needs initially made toch'im corvée and then penal labor, thereby dismissing it as simple toil...
November 20, 2018: History of Science; An Annual Review of Literature, Research and Teaching
https://read.qxmd.com/read/30428720/optimizing-nature-invoking-the-natural-in-the-struggle-over-water-fluoridation
#8
Frank Zelko
For the past seventy years, a host of scientific and public health bodies in the United States have strongly endorsed the practice of adding fluoride compounds to public water supplies as a prophylactic against dental caries. Throughout that period, a constant undercurrent of skepticism and outright opposition has slowed the adoption of the practice in the United States and limited its spread to just a handful of countries around the world. One of the attractions of water fluoridation is its affordability: the fluoride compounds are sourced from the phosphate and aluminum industries, for whom they would otherwise constitute an annoying toxic waste disposal problem...
November 15, 2018: History of Science; An Annual Review of Literature, Research and Teaching
https://read.qxmd.com/read/30326726/making-things-new-invention-privileges-and-the-configuration-of-priority
#9
Marius Buning
It was because of the early modern system of invention privileges that questions concerning inventorship became a recurrent subject matter of legal dispute. This essay focuses mainly on the details of one such dispute, namely the 1597 case litigated in the Dutch Republic between Jacob Floris van Langren (ca. 1525-1610) and Jodocus Hondius Sr. (1563-1611). The essay assesses how the law shaped, challenged, and constrained claims to innovation, pushing the argument that it was because of the privilege system that the borders between imitation and novelty became ever more clearly defined...
October 16, 2018: History of Science; An Annual Review of Literature, Research and Teaching
https://read.qxmd.com/read/30309265/laboratory-of-domesticity-gender-race-and-science-at-the-bermuda-biological-station-for-research-1903-30
#10
Jenna Tonn
During the early twentieth century, the Bermuda Biological Station for Research (BBSR) functioned as a multipurpose scientific site. Jointly founded by New York University, Harvard University, and the Bermuda Natural History Society, the BBSR created opportunities for a mostly US-based set of practitioners to study animal biology in the field. I argue that mixed gender field stations like the BBSR supported professional advancement in science, while also operating as important places for women and men to experiment with the social and cultural work of identity formation, courtship and marriage, and social critique...
October 11, 2018: History of Science; An Annual Review of Literature, Research and Teaching
https://read.qxmd.com/read/30295092/science-and-terminology-in-between-empires-ukrainian-science-in-a-search-for-its-language-in-the-nineteenth-century
#11
Jan Surman
Ukrainian science and its terminology in the nineteenth century experienced a number of twists and turns. Divided between two empires, it lacked institutions, scholars pursuing it, and a unified literary language. One could even say that until the late nineteenth century there was a possibility for two communities with two literary languages to emerge - Ruthenian (Habsburg Empire) and Ukrainian (Russian Empire). Eventually, both communities and languages merged. This article tracks the meanderings of this process, arguing that scholarly publications played a crucial role in shaping the standard for the scientific language...
October 8, 2018: History of Science; An Annual Review of Literature, Research and Teaching
https://read.qxmd.com/read/30270676/learning-anatomy-in-late-sixteenth-century-padua
#12
Michael Stolberg
Based on the newly discovered, extensive manuscript notes of a virtually unknown German medical student by the name of Johann Konrad Zinn, who studied in Padua from 1593 to 1595, this paper offers a detailed account of what medical students could expect to learn about anatomy in late sixteenth-century Padua. It highlights the large number and wide range of anatomical demonstrations, most of which were private anatomies for a small circle of students and do not figure in Acta of the German Nation, the principal source historians have so far relied upon...
September 30, 2018: History of Science; An Annual Review of Literature, Research and Teaching
https://read.qxmd.com/read/30270663/ancient-egypt-and-the-geological-antiquity-of-man-1847-1863
#13
Meira Gold
The 1850s through early 60s was a transformative period for nascent studies of the remote human past in Britain, across many disciplines. Naturalists and scholars with Egyptological knowledge fashioned themselves as authorities to contend with this divisive topic. In a characteristic case of long-distance fieldwork, British geologist Leonard Horner employed Turkish-born, English-educated, Cairo-based engineer Joseph Hekekyan to measure Nile silt deposits around pharaonic monuments in Egypt to address the chronological gap between the earliest historical and latest geological time...
September 30, 2018: History of Science; An Annual Review of Literature, Research and Teaching
https://read.qxmd.com/read/30270660/the-sphere-and-the-dome-the-calouste-gulbenkian-planetarium-in-lisbon-and-the-imperial-myth-of-the-estado-novo
#14
Pedro M P Raposo
Inaugurated in 1965, the Calouste Gulbenkian Planetarium (CGP) was the first institution of its kind in Portugal. The CGP was established in the context of the relocation of the Maritime Museum of Lisbon (Museu de Marinha) to Belém, an area of the Portuguese capital highly symbolic of Portuguese maritime and imperial history. The dictatorial regime known as Estado Novo used Belém as a ground for major events that affirmed the legitimacy of Portugal's overseas empire by celebrating the maritime deeds of erstwhile sovereigns and navigators, in a mythical narrative of a glorious imperial destiny...
September 30, 2018: History of Science; An Annual Review of Literature, Research and Teaching
https://read.qxmd.com/read/30173566/the-history-of-science-and-the-history-of-bureaucratic-knowledge-saxon-mining-circa-1770
#15
Sebastian Felten
This article looks into mining in central Germany in the late eighteenth century as one area of highly charged exchange between (specific manifestations of early modern) science and the (early modern) state. It describes bureaucratic knowledge as socially distributed cognition by following the steps of a high-ranking official that led him to discover a rich silver ore deposit. Although this involved hybridization of practical/artisanal and theoretical/scientific knowledge, and knowers, the focus of this article is on purification or boundary work that took place when actors in and around the mines consciously contributed to different circuits of knowledge production...
September 3, 2018: History of Science; An Annual Review of Literature, Research and Teaching
https://read.qxmd.com/read/29936869/eurasianism-versus-indogermanism-linguistics-and-mythology-in-the-1930s-controversies-over-european-prehistory
#16
Stefanos Geroulanos, Jamie Phillips
In 1935, the Russian linguist Prince Nicolai S. Trubetskoi and the French mythologist Georges Dumézil engaged in a vicious debate over a seemingly obscure subject: the structure of Northwest Caucasian languages. Based on unknown archival material in French, German, and Russian, this essay uses the debate as a pathway into the 1930s scientific and political stakes of IndoEuropeanism - the belief that European cultures emerged through the spread of a single IndoEuropean people out of a single "motherland...
September 2018: History of Science; An Annual Review of Literature, Research and Teaching
https://read.qxmd.com/read/29909654/placing-plants-on-paper-lists-herbaria-and-tables-as-experiments-with-territorial-inventory-at-the-mid-seventeenth-century-gotha-court
#17
Alix Cooper
Over the past several decades, historians of science have come increasingly to focus on the role of so-called "paper technologies," reorganizing and transforming information through the use of paper and pen, in the emergence of modern science. Taking as a case study an effort by administrators in the seventeenth-century German princely state of Saxe-Gotha to enlist foresters and herb-women to catalog the medicinal plants of the territory, this article analyzes the varied forms of paperwork produced in the process, including an extremely unusual table, and argues that the table represented an effort to produce a synoptic visualization, akin to but not identical to a map, of the location of the territory's herbs...
September 2018: History of Science; An Annual Review of Literature, Research and Teaching
https://read.qxmd.com/read/29909642/riotous-assemblage-and-the-materials-of-regulation
#18
Jenny Bulstrode
In the stores of the British Museum are three exquisite springs, made in the late 1820s and 1830s, to regulate the most precise timepieces in the world. Barely the thickness of a hair, they are exquisite because they are made entirely of glass. Combining new documentary evidence, funded by the Antiquarian Horological Society, with the first technical analysis of the springs, undertaken in collaboration with the British Museum, the research presented here uncovers their extraordinary significance to the global extension of nineteenth century capitalism through the repeal of the Corn Laws...
September 2018: History of Science; An Annual Review of Literature, Research and Teaching
https://read.qxmd.com/read/29683000/re-examining-the-early-history-of-the-leiden-jar-stabilization-and-variation-in-transforming-a-phenomenon-into-a-fact
#19
Cibelle Celestino Silva, Peter Heering
In this paper, we examine the period that immediately followed the invention of the Leiden jar. Historians of science have developed narrations that emphasize the role of grounding during the process of charging the jar. In this respect, this episode shows significant aspects that can be used to characterize science, scientific knowledge production, and the nature of science. From our own experimentation, we learned that grounding was not necessary in order to produce the effect. These experiences inspired us to go back to primary sources...
September 2018: History of Science; An Annual Review of Literature, Research and Teaching
https://read.qxmd.com/read/30058376/when-life-gives-you-lemons-frank-meyer-authority-and-credit-in-early-twentieth-century-plant-hunting
#20
Xan Sarah Chacko
In the early twentieth century, the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) funded international expeditions with the aim of finding plant specimens for introduction into the agricultural landscape and the new experimental projects in hybridization. One such agricultural explorer, noted for his eponymous lemon, was Frank Nicholas Meyer, an immigrant from the Netherlands whose expeditions in Asia have brought to the United States celebrated fruit and toxic weeds. Neither professional botanists nor farmers, plant hunters like Meyer worked by taking advantage of historical allegiances to academic programs, while leaning on the authority of their newer national institutions...
July 29, 2018: History of Science; An Annual Review of Literature, Research and Teaching
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