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The Materiality of Scientific Knowledge

Friday, 30 September 2016Saturday, 1 October 2016

Kislak Center, 6th floor, Van Pelt-Dietrich Library

The Materiality of Scientific Knowledge

Image–Text–Book

Symposium presented by Kislak Center for Special Collections, Rare Books and Manuscripts, Penn Libraries; Penn Humanities Forum; and Rare Book School, University of Virginia.

Throughout the long history of scientific investigation, ideas were developed, shared, and validated through various print and art forms. These material factors—the conditions of writing, printing, and illustration—underwrite the exchange and sharing of scientific knowledge from classical antiquity to the nineteenth century. This symposium will investigate the myriad, often contradictory vocabularies we use to analyze images and text in scientific writing. Its goal is to promote more fruitful interdisciplinary, collaborative work in the history of scientific thought.

Full symposium details, including schedule and registration


Symposium Keynote Address presented by Penn Humanities Forum

30 September, 5:00–6:30pm, Class of 78 Pavilion, Kislak Center, 6th floor, Van Pelt-Dietrich Library
Copying as Translation: Direct Observation vs. Copied Scientific Illustrations
Sachiko Kusukawa
Fellow in History and Philosophy of Science, Trinity College, University of Cambridge

Image detail: Vesalius, Andreas. De humani corporis fabrica. Basileae: Per Ioannem Oporinum, 1555.

Symposium is free and open to the public. Pre-registration required.