Science

138 Fall 2016 History of Science in the U.S

The course covers the history of science in the U.S. from the colonial period up to the present. We will be focusing on the unique situation of the sciences within the changing U.S. context, emphasizing debates over the place of science in intellectual, cultural, religious, and political life.

103S.001 Fall 2016 Science, Religion, and Magic in Early Modern Europe (Proseminar in History of Science)

This seminar explores the momentous transformation of knowledge that took place between the late sixteenth and the early eighteenth century, and which is usually described as the Scientific Revolution. During this period, the criteria for assessing what can count as sound evidence changed significantly, as did those to judge whether an argument is valid, or a belief credible. We shall explore the social and cultural contexts in which Western science emerged as a distinctive kind of knowledge and set of practices.

88 Spring 2016 How Does History Count?

In this connector course, we will explore how historical data becomes historical evidence and how recent technological advances affect long-established practices, such as close attention to historical context and contingency. Will the advent of fast computing and big data make history “count” more or lead to unprecedented insights into the study of change over time?

103S.002 Spring 2016 Comparative perspectives in the history of science, medicine and public health

Somehow, over the eighteenth to twentieth centuries, medicine went from an inexact art to a rational science. Scientific breakthroughs such as anatomical understandings of the body, the development of germ theory, and the creation of antibiotics allowed professional health practitioners to treat illness with increasing precision. The rise of biomedicine was a fraught process, however, as new ideas about scientific medicine came into contact with indigenous health-preserving practices.

101.011 Spring 2016 Science from Enlightenment to the Twentieth Century

This seminar is designed to help students develop and execute a thesis project in the history of science. Our focus will be on developing historiographical methods and the practical aspects of historical writing. Topics are limited to scientific subjects from the period between 1700 and 1980. However, the seminar does not limit geographical focus and the theses may be area-specific or transnational in nature.

280S Spring 2016 History of Quantification

This is a graduate reading seminar querying how it came to be that we understand the world through numbers: how quantification happened, who we are who did it, what understanding means in this context, and what the world becomes in its wake. Quantification stands in for a cluster of processes and ideas (counting, mathematization, formalization, rationalization, objectivity, positivism, history of the “fact,” measurement, calculation, forecasting, standardization).

275S Spring 2016 Graduate Seminar: The History of Science

This seminar will provide an advanced introduction to the study of science and technology as objects of historical and sociological inquiry. What does it mean to think historically about notions such as the scientific method, objectivity, truth, and technological efficiency? We shall discuss exemplary research in the history of science and science studies, from the Scientific Revolution to contemporary technoscience, and critically engage with key themes and methodologies in these fields.

290 Spring 2016 Historical Colloquium: History of Science

This is a 1-credit S/U graduate course in history of science, accompanying the CSTMS Colloquium. The meetings consist of invited lectures by leading researchers in the field of history of science and science studies, followed by an extended session of questions and answers (the calendar will be available on the CSTMS website in August: http://cstms.berkeley.edu). Additionally, students will meet the speakers in informal roundtable discussions ("master classes").

103S.003 Fall 2015 Science, Religion, and Magic in Early Modern Europe

This seminar studies the momentous transformation of knowledge that took place between the late sixteenth and the early eighteenth century, and which is usually described as the Scientific Revolution. During this period, the criteria for assessing what can count as sound evidence changed significantly, as did those to judge whether an argument is valid, or a belief credible.

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