Working Groups

History and Theory

The History and Theory Working Group focuses on theoretical and methodological issues such as philosophy of history, historical research, interpretation, and narrative—not necessarily confined to the history of science. The working group meets monthly to discuss a colleague’s work in progress or to discuss readings that are of particular interest to participants. Meetings are usually held at the Consortium offices in Philadelphia from 6:00 to 7:30 on first Tuesdays. Scholars located anywhere can also participate online.


  • Suman Seth

    Suman Seth is Associate Professor, Department of Science and Technology Studies, Cornell University. He works on the social, cultural, and intellectual history of modern science, including history of physical sciences (particularly quantum theory), gender and science, & science, race, and colonialism.


  • Laura Stark

    Laura Stark is Assistant Professor at Vanderbilt University's Center for Medicine, Health, and Society, and Associate Editor of the journal History and Theory. She has published works on the history of medicine, morality, and the modern state, and pieces on social theory.


Upcoming Meetings

There are no currently scheduled upcoming events.

Past Meetings

  • November 3, 2015

    The group discussed John Zammito, "Koselleck's Philosophy of Historical Time(s) and the Practice of History," History and Theory 43 (2004): 124-35; Johannes Fabian, Preface and Ch. 2, Time and the Other: How Anthropology Makes its Object (Columbia, 1983); and David Carr, Chapter 1, "The temporal structure of experience and action," Time, Narrative, and History (Indiana University Press, 1991)

  • October 6, 2015

    The group discussed Dipesh Chakrabarty, "The Climate of History: Four Theses," Critical Inquiry 35, no. 2 (2009): 197-222, and Reinhard Koselleck, "Chapter 6: Time and History," from The Practice of Conceptual History: Timing History, Spacing Concepts (Stanford University Press, 2002).

  • May 5, 2015

    The group discussed Peter Sloterdijk, The Art of Philosophy (Columbia University Press, 2012).

  • April 7, 2015

    The group discussed Peter Sloterdijk's You Must Change Your Life, pp. 190-242, 298-379, and 404-452.

  • March 3, 2015
    The group discussed selections from You Must Change Your Life by Peter Sloterdijk: pp. 83-105 (Religions Do Not Exist); 109-130 (mostly Nietzsche and the Vertical); 131-159 (Wittgenstein and Foucault); and optionally 177-242 (other stuff, monasticism included) as well as a piece by William James on practice/verticality/energy/ethics, "The Energies of Men," and a review of an interesting recent book connecting James' energetics to Foucault's ascetics.
  • February 3, 2015

    The group discussed pp 1-60 of You Must Change Your Life by Peter Sloterdijk along with his "Spheres Theory, Talking to Myself About the Poetics of Space" and Marie-Eve Morin's "Cohabitating in the globalised world: Peter Sloterdijk's global foams and Bruno Latour's cosmopolitics"

  • December 2, 2014

    Evan Hepler-Smith of Princeton University introduced pp. 272-370 of Creative Evolution by Henri Bergson as well as Chapters 1-2, 5, and Conclusion to Deleuze's Bergsonism (Zone Books, 1991) and Eli During's essay, "'A History of Problems': Bergson and the French Epistemological Tradition", Journal of the British Society for Phenomenology, v. 35, n. 1, January 2004.

  • November 4, 2014

    The group discussed pp. 135-271 of Creative Evolution by Henri Bergson. Trans. Mitchell. NY: Dover, 1998 (reprint of 1911 edition).

  • October 7, 2014

    The group discussed pp. 1-135 of Creative Evolution by Henri Bergson. Trans. Mitchell. NY: Dover, 1998 (reprint of 1911 edition) as well as pp. 62-81, "Neither Vitalism Nor Materialism" from Vibrant Matter by Jane Bennett.

  • April 8, 2014

    The group discussed pp. 233-356 of Bruno Latour's An inquiry into Modes of Existence: An Anthropology of the Moderns

Group Membership