Introduction

James Delbourgo, Staffan Müller-Wille

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

15 Scopus citations

Abstract

Anthropologists, linguists, cultural historians, and literary scholars have long emphasized the value of examining writing as a material practice and have often invoked the list as a paradigmatic example thereof. This Focus section explores how lists can open up fresh possibilities for research in the history of science. Drawing on examples from the early modern period, the contributors argue that attention to practices of list making reveals important relations between mercantile, administrative, and scientific attempts to organize the contents of the world. Early modern lists projected both spatial and temporal visions of nature: they inventoried objects in the process of exchange and collection; they projected possible trajectories for future endeavor; they publicized the social identities of scientific practitioners; and they became research tools that transformed understandings of the natural order.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)710-715
Number of pages6
JournalISIS
Volume103
Issue number4
DOIs
StatePublished - Dec 2012

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • History
  • Earth and Planetary Sciences (miscellaneous)
  • History and Philosophy of Science

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