rss_2.0HoST - Journal of History of Science and Technology FeedSciendo RSS Feed for HoST - Journal of History of Science and Technology - Journal of History of Science and Technology Feed Social History of Science and Historiography: Where are We in Brazil? Review: Thomas Morel. . Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2023. 292 pp. ISBN: 978-1009267304é Rebouças Beyond the Atlantic: The Racism and Sociability Network of a Black Nineteenth-Century Engineer<abstract> <title style='display:none'>Abstract</title> <p>In this article, we analyse the intellectual trajectory of André Pinto Rebouças (1838-1898) between 1870 and 1888, and how he problematised the relation between education, technology, and social reform. Rebouças argued that access to land and technical education were the mechanisms of upward mobility for black people and European immigrants. He was an engineer, teacher, businessman, abolitionist, journalist, and man of science. His family, intellectual, and professional trajectory was permeated by an extensive sociability network and racial barriers, both within and outside Brazil. Rebouças was a spokesman for the social concerns of his time, particularly those which affected not only the productive sector, but the living conditions and survival of non-white people. The relevance of this work is to add reflections to the history of science and black intellectuals.</p> </abstract>ARTICLEtrue Review: Martino Lorenzo Fagnani. . Cham: Palgrave Macmillan, 2023, 277 pp. ISBN: 978-3-031-20656-6 Alves’ Trajectory as an Agronomist and Federal Intervener in Bahia: State Investments in Agriculture and Education (1938-1942)<abstract> <title style='display:none'>Abstract</title> <p>Landulfo Alves was an agronomist who was educated in the USA and became a politician, having served as federal intervener in Bahia from 1938 to 1942, in the context of the <italic>Estado Novo</italic>, and later as senator of the Republic from 1951 to 1954. His investments in agriculture and education left important legacies for scientific activities in Bahia. Despite these achievements, historians may not have fully grasped his importance in the development of Bahia, especially in science. Seeking to fill this void, this paper addresses questions which have received little exploration in historiography: how did his education motivate his initiation into the public sphere and influence his political choices? What were his investments in the state? Was he an isolated case, or was he in line with the development policies of his time? As a result, we hope that this work will provide new historiographical approaches to Landulfo Alves’ contributions to science and higher education in Bahia.</p> </abstract>ARTICLEtrue Review: Karine Chemla and Glenn W. Most, eds. . Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2022, 464 pp. ISBN: 978-1-1088-3957-0 Transformation of a Science by a “Technology”: The Case of Astrophysics and the Introduction of Machine Learning<abstract> <title style='display:none'>Abstract</title> <p>This article explores the transformations of an area of scientific research provoked by the introduction of big data and the possibilities to treat them by Artificial Intelligence. We study these transformations in contemporary astrophysics as it has developed over the last thirty years. These transformations extend from cognitive work procedures to information processing, systems of collaboration between scientists, epistemology and terrain of questions.</p> </abstract>ARTICLEtrue History of New World Leishmaniases From a Brazilian Perspective<abstract> <title style='display:none'>Abstract</title> <p>This article addresses the leishmaniases in the Americas from a Brazilian perspective. The first cases of cutaneous and mucocutaneous leishmaniasis were described in 1909 in São Paulo. Latin American researchers gained international projection because of their work on this disease they considered autochthonous, which came to be known as American tegumentary leishmaniasis. But visceral leishmaniasis only emerged as a public health problem in the Americas in 1934 thanks to a new diagnostic technique for yellow fever. Zoonoses earned greater attention later, especially in the laboratory founded in 1965 at the Evandro Chagas Institute by Ralph Lainson and Jeffrey Shaw. Here we examine their connections with other teams and the resulting changes when they proved that parasite, vector, and host populations were much more heterogeneous than previously imagined. Technical innovations provided a better understanding of the distinct epidemiological characteristics of the illnesses caused by different <italic>Leishmania</italic> amid a backdrop of far-reaching transnational networks.</p> </abstract>ARTICLEtrue Silence. The Reaction to Rachel Carson’s Book (1962) in Scandinavian Gardening Magazines<abstract> <title style='display:none'>Abstract</title> <p>This article examines the reception of Rachel Carson’s book <italic>Silent Spring</italic> in Scandinavian family gardening magazines. In Sweden, Norway and Denmark, family gardening associations were broad organisations with significant social impact. They were the most important arenas for transfer of scientific knowledge and values on gardening, linking plant protection experts, producers and sellers of gardening chemicals, horticultural advisors and the general public. Thus, these associations and their magazines influenced many social groups that had common interests in non-commercial gardening as part of their everyday life. In practice, these family gardening magazines were heavily dependent on the income from garden chemicals advertisements. Consequently, their editorial policies and plant protection technical advice were deeply rooted in the post-war ideals of chemical agriculture and horticulture. These ideals were pursued and applied everywhere—even into the tiniest allotment and family garden. Scandinavian countries and their gardening associations have many similarities and some differences between them. This makes them an interesting case for comparison. The gardening magazines of Sweden, Norway and Denmark show quite a few similarities in the way they first pretended to ignore Carson while spending much effort countering the possible effects of her message, and in the way they retrospectively engaged with her book. There are, however, quite interesting differences in the way the national garden associations, their magazine editors and the magazines’ pesticide experts handled the publicity generated by <italic>Silent Spring</italic> on the harmfulness of garden chemicals.</p> </abstract>ARTICLEtrue Reflections on Last Triennium Shannon’s Bandwagon. Rethinking the Reception of Information Theory in Thermal Physics, 1948-1957<abstract> <title style='display:none'>Abstract</title> <p>In this paper I analyze the historical case of how Shannon’s theory of information, among other alternative theories, began to be applied rapidly and systematically within thermal physics in the 1950s. After evaluating this theory and the intellectual context in which it is inserted, I argue that it was not the formal-conceptual features of Shannon’s theory but the particular motivations of influential scientists such as von Neumann, Weaver and Wiener that properly made it possible for information science to become deeply rooted in thermal physics during the 1950s, as shown by the proposals of Brillouin and Jaynes.</p> </abstract>ARTICLEtrue Review: Matteo Valleriani, Giulia Giannini, and Enrico Giannetto, eds., . Cham: Springer, 2023. 360pp. ISBN: 978-3-031-11316-1 Review: Maria Elvira Callapez, Sara Marques da Cruz, Vânia Carvalho, eds., Leiria: Município de Leiria, Museu de Leiria, 2022. 269 pp Review: Pekka Hämäläinen, , New York: Liveright, 2022. 571 pp. ISBN: 978-1-63149-699-8ândido Baptista de Oliveira and the “Forgotten Memoir”: The First Plan of a National Astronomical Observatory After Brazilian Independence (1822-1831)<abstract> <title style='display:none'>Abstract</title> <p>On February 1, 1828, the newspaper <italic>Diario Fluminense</italic> published in full the Plan for the establishment of an astronomical observatory in the city of Rio de Janeiro. The document was written by the Brazilian mathematician Cândido Baptista de Oliveira and substantiated the approval of the law determining the creation of the future Imperial Astronomical Observatory of Rio de Janeiro (IORJ). This paper discusses the influences embedded within Oliveira’s project, by analyzing the appropriation of different scientific traditions gained during his training as a mathematician at the Observatory of the University of Coimbra and during his studies at French scientific institutions, such as the Polytechnic School and Paris Observatory. I argue that this project had a nationalistic ideal, imbued with the notions of progress and modernity, both effects of the ongoing circulation of people and scientific knowledge during the beginning of the nineteenth century.</p> </abstract>ARTICLEtrue Dinosaur Renaissance 1960s-80s: A Foundational Episode for the Historiography of Paleoart<abstract> <title style='display:none'>Abstract</title> <p>The “Dinosaur Renaissance” is known as a crucial event in the study of dinosaurs. From sluggish and lizard-like, they came to be conceived and represented as more dynamic animals. This paper argues that the “Dinosaur Renaissance” did not only constitute a significant scientific and artistic shift. Indeed, it can also be interpreted as a foundational episode for the historiography of paleoart. During the “Dinosaur Renaissance,” a growing community of artists and paleontologists promoted the integration of artistic processes in paleontology. They began to actively discuss the historical legacy and future of such integration. The itinerant paleoart exhibition <italic>Dinosaurs Past and Present</italic>, hosted in eight major cities across North America at the end of the 1980s, can be identified as having played a significant role in setting the foundation for the historiography of paleoart. The “Dinosaur Renaissance” did not only result in revised visual representations of dinosaurs, but also spurred some of the first investigations on the historical relationship between visual arts and paleontology. This article concludes by offering some remarks on how the present historiography of paleoart can continue to build on the efforts made during the “Dinosaur Renaissance” while remaining cognizant of their context. To effectively answer the needs of historians, as well as of paleontologists and paleoartists alike, the growing historiography of paleoart has much to gain in clarifying its own history.</p> </abstract>ARTICLEtrue Prometheus in the Garden of Eden. Essays on the Anthropocene Review: Gianenrico Bernasconi and Susanne Thürigen, eds. Humankind Overwhelmed Nature’s Agency?<abstract> <title style='display:none'>Abstract</title> <p>Humankind’s relationship with nature has been evolutionary. Nature’s agency initially overpowered human agency, limiting what people could do in their quest for survival. Ever so slowly people domesticated material things, such as fire and wood, and they made tools to assist them from bones, wood, and stone that gradually became more sophisticated. These tools became the principal link between humankind and the material world, and as human communities became more complex, people produced sophisticated tools worthy of being called technologies. Ships, mills, weapons, buildings—each invention and innovation increased human agency, and nature slowly gave way before it, a process visible through landscapes. This essay focuses on North America, where between the sixteenth and twentieth centuries, human commodification of nature and the side effects of their technologies ultimately became so complex and complete that they ate away at the planetary ecosystem on which their own existence depends. Today, the Anthropocene encapsulates the idea of the age of humans, and nature’s agency seems to crumble as an independent force in the face of human actions.</p> </abstract>ARTICLEtrue’s Theory and its Introduction in Spain: The Use of Instruments for Scientific Demonstrations<abstract> <title style='display:none'>Abstract</title> <p>The theory of image formation in a microscope proposed by Ernst Abbe changed the scientific approach to microscopy. Though the theory had many detractors, his new approach led to a technological revolution in the design and construction of high-quality microscopes. It paved the way for new discoveries in the fields of biology and medicine. Joaquín María de Castellarnau, was a contemporary connoisseur of Abbe’s ideas who decided to disseminate them in Spain through various publications and training courses. In his lectures, he used various devices for practical demonstrations that allowed some concepts of the new theory to be better understood. At the Museo Nacional de Ciencias Naturales in Madrid (MNCN–CSIC), one such original and unusual instrument designed by Abbe and used by Castellarnau has been preserved in perfect condition. Castellarnau used this instrument for various experiments that helped clarify the most complex points of Abbe’s theory. In this work, we explore how the context in which science developed in Spain favoured practical activities to demonstrate new scientific theories, such as Abbe’s in the early twentieth century.</p> </abstract>ARTICLEtrue