Conference: Perspectives for the History of Life Sciences
October 30 – November 1, 2015 in Munich, Germany
Organized by Kärin Nickelsen (LMU Munich) and Robert Meunier (University of Kassel)
There are themes in the biological and biomedical sciences that, for good reasons, play a disproportionate role in the historiography, such as evolutionary theory, genetics, molecular biology or medical bacteriology. In recent years, the history of the life-sciences has widened its scope and looked beyond these undoubtedly important developments. And yet, there are still many areas in the biological sciences and many aspects of medicine that have not received the attention they deserve, such as, to name only a few, plant physiology, agricultural sciences, microbiology, research in metabolism, or the dissemination of biological technologies. More recent developments in the life sciences, those from the 1970s and 80s, have hardly been studied at all. The exploration of these, in particular, would greatly benefit from a closer connection between historiographies of the biological sciences, medicine and technology – as well as from an enhanced dialogue with philosophical and social studies of science, and their conceptual frameworks.
The conference brings together historians of biology, medicine and related fields, as well as scholars in philosophy and social studies of science who address historical questions, in order to present and discuss new research directions in the history of the modern life-sciences. The contributions focus on new themes, under-investigated fields; make use of novel types of sources; and develop new approaches to studying the generation, dissemination and transformation of knowledge about life and living things.
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