Download Memory Practices in the Sciences by Geoffrey C. Bowker PDF

By Geoffrey C. Bowker

Winner, 2007 Ludwig Fleck Prize given through the Society for Social reports of technology (4S). and offered "Best details technology publication 2006" via the yank Society for info technological know-how and expertise (ASIS&T).
The approach we checklist wisdom, and the internet of technical, formal, and social practices that surrounds it, necessarily impacts the data that we checklist. The methods we carry wisdom concerning the past—in handwritten manuscripts, in revealed books, in dossier folders, in databases—shape the type of tales we inform approximately that previous. during this energetic and erudite examine the relation of our details infrastructures to our info, Geoffrey Bowker examines how, over the last 200 years, info expertise has converged with the character and creation of clinical wisdom. His tale weaves a direction among the social and political paintings of constructing an specific, indexical reminiscence for science—the making of infrastructures—and the diversity of how we regularly reconfigure, lose, and regain the past.

At a time whilst reminiscence is so reasonable and its recording is so protean, Bowker reminds us of the centrality of what and the way we elect to fail to remember. In Memory Practices within the Sciences he appears at 3 "memory epochs" of the 19th, 20th, and twenty-first centuries and their specific reconstructions and reconfigurations of clinical wisdom. The 19th century's imperative technological know-how, geology, mapped either the social and the wildlife right into a unmarried time package deal (despite obvious discontinuities), as, differently, did mid-twentieth-century cybernetics. either, Bowker argues, packaged time in methods listed via their info applied sciences to allow site visitors among the social and typical worlds. cutting-edge sciences of biodiversity, in the meantime, "database the realm" in a manner that excludes yes areas, entities, and instances. We use the instruments of the current to examine the previous, says Bowker; we undertaking onto nature our modes of organizing our personal affairs.

Show description

Read Online or Download Memory Practices in the Sciences PDF

Similar history & philosophy books

American Hegemony and the Postwar Reconstruction of Science in Europe (Transformations: Studies in the History of Science and Technology)

In 1945, the U.S. was once not just the most powerful fiscal and army strength on the planet; it was once additionally the world's chief in technology and know-how. In American Hegemony and the Postwar Reconstruction of technological know-how in Europe, John Krige describes the efforts of influential figures within the usa to version postwar medical practices and associations in Western Europe on these in the US.

The Science of the Struggle for Existence: On the Foundations of Ecology

Gregory Cooper's learn examines concerns within the philosophy of ecology which have been a resource of controversy because the lifestyles of ecology as a self-discipline. those controversies revolve round the notion of a stability of nature; the potential for basic ecological wisdom; and the function of model-building in ecology.

Science and Civilisation in China. General Conclusions and Reflections. Vol. VII:2

Joseph Needham, who died in 1995, used to be the best British historian of China of the final a hundred years. His technology and Civilisation in China sequence brought on a seismic shift in western perceptions of China, published as probably the world's such a lot scientifically and technically effective state in pre-modern occasions.

Towards a Semiotic Biology: Life is the Action of Signs

This ebook provides programmatic texts on biosemiotics, written jointly via international major students within the box (Deacon, Emmeche, Favareau, Hoffmeyer, Kull, Marko , Pattee, Stjernfelt). furthermore, the booklet contains chapters which concentration heavily on semiotic case experiences (Bruni, Kotov, Maran, Neuman, Turovski).

Additional info for Memory Practices in the Sciences

Example text

The boundaries between the epochs are rarely clear—Homer’s epics were consigned to writing and then print, Ugaritic texts have made it to the World Wide Web, and the canon of classical Greek literature is on CD-ROM (in the form of the Thesaurus Linguae Graecae). These remain real boundaries, however, in two ways. First, every act of migration across media is a conscious act in the present: unless there is a contemporary constituency for a book, for example, it will not find its way onto the Web.

Cannadine (1992), in a study of British monarchy and the invention of tra­ dition between 1820 and 1977, points to “an efflorescence of ‘invented’ ritual and tradition in Wilhelmine Germany and the French Third Republic” (103) and to a renewed ceremonial and putatively traditional configuration of the British monarchy in the period between 1870 and 1914, a period when “in London, as in other great cities, monumental, commemorative statues prolif­ erated” (128). This was also the period of the invention of the Mafia out of a mixture of whole cloth and puppet theater, and of its projection onto a distant past (Fentress and Wickham 1992, 173-199).

If we want to understand memory practices in the sciences or in other spheres, I am suggesting, then we need to look elsewhere. My goal in this book is to begin to trace some delineations of this elsewhere. It is clear from this folding that a lot of our memory practices are about the present: we should not be looking for them in dusty archives. Consider the hrst. This generalizes to the observation that classification systems come into being at the site of a memory trace (a play on Freud’s remark, developed by Benjamin, that “consciousness comes into being at the site of a memory trace” and thus “becoming conscious and leaving behind a memory trace are processes incompatible with each other within one and the same system” (Benjamin and Arendt 1986)).

Download PDF sample

Rated 4.42 of 5 – based on 46 votes