Introduction to the History of Science

History 275S

Fall 2013
Day & Time: 
Tu 2-4P
  • Note new room.
  • This seminar will provide an advanced introduction to the study of science and technology as objects of historical inquiry. What does it mean to think historically about notions such as the scientific method, objectivity, truth, and technological efficiency? We shall read and discuss exemplary research in the history of science from the seventeenth century to the present, and critically engage with key themes and methodologies in this field. Topics will include the origins of modern science and its relationships to magic, religion, gender, colonial networks, and political power. We shall pay particular attention to the ways in which locally produced knowledge and artifacts can travel and achieve universal credibility. By the end of the seminar students will be familiar with the main approaches used by historians and sociologists to reconstructed the complex interaction of science, technology, and society in the making of the modern world.