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 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 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.
There are no currently scheduled upcoming events.
February 2, 2016
- The group discussed Greg Dening, “Performing on the Beaches of the Mind: An Essay,” History and Theory 41, no. 1 (2002): 1-24, and Berber Bevernage, “Tales of pastness and contemporaneity: on politics of time in history and anthropology,” MS. )
December 1, 2015
The group discussed Ch. 1 of Johannes Fabian, Time and the Other: How Anthropology Makes its Object (Columbia, 1983); Ch. 6 of David Carr, Time, Narrative, and History (Indiana University Press, 1991); and John Zammito, "Koselleck's Philosophy of Historical Time(s) and the Practice of History," History and Theory 43 (2004): 124-35.
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).