Tuesday, April 30, 2019

13th May - Cities


Our second meeting of term will take place in the Newnham Grange Seminar Room at Darwin College from 7.30-9pm on Monday 13th May.

We will continue our theme of texts from 1919 with a pair of readings on 'Cities':
All welcome! 

Monday, April 29, 2019

Workshop - Temporalities in Scientific Narratives

Does Time Always Pass? Temporalities in Scientific Narratives
May 30-31 2019 LSE/Royal Institution, London

Workshop organised as a collaboration between the Narrative Science Project and The Royal Institution.

Venue: The Royal Institution, Albemarle Street, London W1S 4BS. We anticipate starting at 10:00 (with coffee available from 09.30) on the 30th and ending by 17.30 on the 31st. Organised by Prof. Mary S. Morgan and Dr. Andrew Hopkins

The standard view of narrative is inextricably bound up with the passage of time. Narrative scholars are convinced that time is an essential element in any narrative, and it has been thought equally essential, though treated in different ways, by philosophers of history. But exactly how to think about time in the narratives of science is not self-evident. And if we look at how scientists use time in narratives, we see a number of different ways in which it is taken into account and is deployed. In this workshop, the focus will be on the different temporalities in narratives as they occur in scientific discourses. The obvious loci for such explorations are what are generally referred to as the historical sciences, that is, those that seek to reconstruct the past on the basis of what can be observed in the present. However, time and its narrative expression are to be found in a wide variety of places, some of which will be explored by the speakers at the workshop. Throughout the workshop, the question of how essential time is to narrative will remain open for argument.

We are grateful to the financial contributions and contributions in kind from the European Research Council and the Royal Institution. If you would like to express interest in attending please contact Dr Dominic Berry. The number of places is unfortunately limited, so please make sure to write to us sooner rather than later. The deadline for expression of interest is Friday May 17. We will notify those we are able to accommodate shortly thereafter.

Speakers and titles:

  • Norton Wise (UCLA) - Faraday's lines of force and the temporality of serial narration 
  • John Beatty (UBC, Vancouver) - When you can't get there from here: The importance of temporal order in evolutionary biology and ecology 
  • Dorothea Debus (Universität Konstanz) - Memory, imagination and narrative 
  • Paula Olmos (Universidad Autónoma de Madrid) - Narratives in scientific argument and explanation 
  • Rosa Hardt (OPEN Scotland) - Narrative Understanding: Parts, Wholes, and Recombinable Systems 
  • William Matthews (LSE, London) - Time and ethnographic generalisation in anthropology: an example from Chinese divination 
  •  John Huss (University of Akron, Ohio) - Mass extinction, narrative closure, and evidence 
  • Teru Miyake (NTU, Singapore) - Temporal detail and evidence in seismic source reconstruction 
  • Anne Teather (University of Manchester) - Stored and storied time in the Neolithic 
  • Elspeth Jajdelska (University of Strathclyde) - Do we always need a timeline? The roles of temporal sequence in art narratives and science narratives 
  • Thomas Bonnin (University of Exeter) - Explaining the origin of eukaryotic cells between narratives and mechanisms 
  • Tirthankar Roy (LSE, London) - Technological change in the Indian textile industry (title TBC) 
  • Daniel Pargman (KTH, Stockholm) - Using allohistorical narratives to envision alternative energy futures 
  • Andrew Hopkins (LSE, London) - Alfred Wegener's arguments for continental drift: A consillience of narrative explanations

PhD travel bursaries

To increase participation from the postgraduate community, we are making available 4 travel bursaries, each of a maximum of £250. These can be used to recover the cost of train or airfare for those who wish to attend, and who are currently enrolled on a PhD programme, preferably with research interests directly related to the workshop agenda. To apply for a PhD travel bursary please write to Dr Dominic Berry. Please include: * Your name * University Affiliation * PhD Programme and thesis title * And no more than 100 words on how this workshop relates to your research. The deadline for applications to the travel bursary is Monday May 13. You will be notified as to the outcome of your application shortly thereafter. Applicants will be selected to ensure a diverse range of research interests and institutions are represented.

Tuesday, April 09, 2019

Talk - Cambridge Bibliographical Society

"Spiritus anima" – an unrecorded seventeenth-century alchemist's library at Clare College, Cambridge

Ed Potten (University of York) and  Dr Tim Chesters (Modern & Medieval Languages, University of Cambridge)

Wednesday 1 May, 2019, 5.00pm (tea from 4.30pm)

Milstein Seminar Rooms, University Library

The identity of the annotator of a collection of extraordinary seventeenth-century alchemical manuscripts, now in the Sloane Collection, has long eluded scholars. The recent discovery of a collection of sixty printed books in the Fellows' Library at Clare College, Cambridge, all annotated in the same characteristic hand, utilizing the same complex system of cross-referencing and the same approach to organizing and recording knowledge, casts new light on the Sloane annotator, his methods and his identity. Ed Potten (University of York, and formerly Head of Rare Books at the University Library) and Dr Tim Chesters (Modern & Medieval Languages, University of Cambridge) will share their discoveries about this enigmatic annotator, accompanied by a display of books.

Thursday, April 04, 2019

Public seminar series - Narrative Science - Apr-Jun 2019 - London

If you would like to be reminded of these seminars in advance, or would like to keep up-to-date with the Narrative Science project (including our upcoming workshops, working papers and publications) please join our mailing list via www.narrative-science.org

  • Neil Tarrant - The Roman Index and Arnald of Villanova: The Rejection of Albert the Great’s Astrology
  • Heike Hartung - Longevity Narratives: From Life Span Optimism to Statistical Panic

  • Sally Horrocks and Paul Merchant - Scientists’ narratives in An Oral History of British Science
  • Sarah Dillon - “The Ineradicable Eliza Effect and Its Dangers”: Weizenbaum, Pygmalion and the Implications of Gendering AI 

  • Emily Hayes - Fashioned in the light of physics: the scope and methods of Halford Mackinder's geography
  • Dominic Berry - Biological engineering as genre

  • Veronika Lipphard - Ethnicizing isolation: How narratives guide genetic research in vulnerable populations
  • Will Tattersdill - What if dinosaurs survived? Or, reading alternate natural history in science fiction and non-fiction of the late twentieth century

Tuesday, April 02, 2019

29th April - Gardens

The Science and Literature Reading Group returns in our usual time and place for Easter Term, reading texts written a century ago in 1919.

Our first meeting will take place in the Newnham Terrace Seminar Room at Darwin College, from 7.30-9pm on Monday 29th April.

We will be reading several works which explore the cultivation, meanings, and magic of actual, artistic, and fantastical gardens:
All welcome!