Wednesday, October 26, 2011
In helping select books for the exhibit, I really got a feel for the panoptic nature of early-modern Jesuit scholarship. As has often been said, the Jesuits were everywhere in the early modern world and the fruits of this globetrotting can be seen in their studies on hydrography, natural history, and cartography. The Society was clearly proud of the global nature of their mission, which is evidenced by the motto "unnus non sufficit orbis." Meaning "one world is not enough," this motto is inscribed in many engraved illustrations on display.
One particularly striking image in which it appears is a large map of the Society in the form of a tree. The trunk of the tree represents Rome, while the branches of the tree are the major missions of the world. A sundial clock is associated with each region of the world where the Jesuits were stationed, allowing the viewer to calculate the time difference between Rome and its provinces. Another one of my favorite images is a large, detailed selenography that appears in Riccioli's Almagestum novum (1651). Produced forty years after Galileo's telescopic study of the moon, much of Riccioli's lunar nomenclature has stuck. (Nick Jacobsen and I are hoping to produce a new interpretation of this image, possibly for HSS next year...)
None of these images can be adequately described in words and I've purposefully omitted links to images in order to encourage people to check out the exhibit, if possible. It will be up through December. However, I will be posting again about another related project: The Jesuit Iconography visual culture database.
Saturday, October 15, 2011
Thursday, October 13, 2011
As the history of science has moved beyond strict intellectual history, our work has gotten more and more interdisciplinary. At the same time, because we are in one of the few independent history of science departments in the country, even our colleagues on the other side of Bascom Hill can sometimes seem like they're from another world. When beginning work on a new project, you inevitably realize that other subdisciplines of history likely have valuable contributions to offer. But catching up on decades of historiography in a field that impinges on your work takes time and hard work. And especially for those of us who come from backgrounds other than history, figuring out how to start can be bewildering.
Wednesday, October 12, 2011
Volume 3: Cartography in the European Renaissance, came out as a two-book set in 2007. Four previous volumes have been published (recently available online at http://www.press.uchicago.edu/books/HOC/) : Volume 1: Cartography in Prehistoric, Ancient, and Medieval Europe and the Mediterranean (1987); Volume 2, Book 1: Cartography in the Traditional Islamic and South Asian Societies (1992); Volume 2, Book 2: Cartography in the Traditional East and Southeast Asian Societies (1994); and Volume 2, Book 3: Cartography in the Traditional African, American, Arctic, Australian, and Pacific Societies (1998).
These volumes have become a standard reference not only for their outstanding scholarship, but for their extensive illustrations (over 1,000 images in Volume 3; 80 in color), detailed footnotes, and reference maps. For information about the Project and these volumes, visit the Project’s web site at http://www.geography.wisc.edu/histcart/.
As a graduate student who has worked at the Project for nearly 12 years as their Illustrations Editor, I’ve gained excellent experience and research skills in locating images needed for the volumes from archives and libraries worldwide. Given my own interests in this field, which pairs nicely with the history of science, I’ve made numerous professional contacts that will be beneficial to my current and future research.
Friday, October 7, 2011
Becker, Howard Saul, and Pamela Richards. Writing for Social Scientists : How to Start and Finish Your Thesis, Book, or Article. 2nd ed, Chicago Guides to Writing, Editing, and Publishing. Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 2007.
Booth, Wayne C., Gregory G. Colomb, and Joseph M. Williams. The Craft of Research. 3rd ed, Chicago Guides to Writing, Editing, and Publishing. Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 2008.
Chandler, James, Arnold I. Davidson, and Harry D. Harootunian. Questions of Evidence : Proof, Practice, and Persuasion across the Disciplines. Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1994.
Davidson, James West, and Mark H. Lytle. After the Fact : The Art of Historical Detection. 2 vols. New York: Knopf, 1982.
Grafton, Anthony. The Footnote : A Curious History. [Rev. ed. Cambridge, Mass.: Harvard University Press, 1997.
Jordanova, L.J., and LJ Jordanova. History in Practice: Arnold London, 2000.
Murray, Rowena. "Writing for Academic Journals." Maidenhead: McGraw-Hill International (UK) Ltd, 2009.
Rampolla, Mary Lynn. A Pocket Guide to Writing in History. 6th ed. Boston: Bedford/St. Martin's, 2010.
Rosen, Leonard J. The Academic Writer's Handbook. 3rd ed. Boston: Pearson Longman, 2012.
Tosh, John. The Pursuit of History : Aims, Methods and New Directions in the Study of Modern History. 5th ed. Harlow, England ; New York: Longman, 2010.
Turabian, Kate L., John Grossman, and Alice Bennett. A Manual for Writers of Term Papers, Theses, and Dissertations. 6th ed, Chicago Guides to Writing, Editing, and Publishing. Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1996.