London Spinoza Circle: Deriving Culture from Nature: Articulate and Inarticulate Bodies in Spinoza's Philosophy of Nature

Thursday 25th January, 3pm-5pm
Room B04, Birkbeck College Main Building, Malet St, Bloomsbury, London WC1E 7HX.
(Entrance from Torrington Square)

Spinoza’s philosophy is often criticised for lacking a direct consideration of art. According to commentators one of the reasons for this is his strong naturalism. Dr. Christopher Thomas (Manchester Metropolitan University) will argue that rather than see Spinoza’s naturalism as reductive in terms of a theory of art and culture, it actually allows for a novel understanding of the work of art as a particularly ‘articulate’ part of nature.

By turning to the two places that Spinoza mentions art in the Ethics–IIIP2Schol and IVP45Schol respectively–, as well as his theory of the sanctity of Scripture in the Theological-Political Treatise, this paper will develop the theory of art and culture that follows from, and is implicit in, Spinoza’s philosophical naturalism.

All are welcome and no registration is required.

Future Meetings, all 3 - 5pm in the Paul Hirst Room, Department of Politics, Birkbeck College, at 10 Gower Street London WC1E 6HJ,

February 15th, 2018 – Prof Yitzhak Melamed (Johns Hopkins University)
March 1st, 2018 – Dr Daniel Whistler (Royal Holloway)
March 22nd, 2018 – Dr Alexander Douglas (St Andrews University)

Presentation: John Wallis (1616-1703) on Teaching Language to a Boy Born Deaf

Monday 22 January 2018, at 17.15.
Main Hall, Taylorian Institution, St Giles, Oxford OX1 3NA.

Dr Jaap Maat (University of Amsterdam)
John Wallis (1616-1703) on Teaching Language to a Boy Born Deaf.

This talk is associated with the recent publication by OUP of the book:
The Popham Notebook and Associated Texts; edited and introduced by David Cram and Jaap Maat.

Teaching Language to a Boy Born Deaf

The talk will be sign-interpreted, and will be followed a wine/soft drinks reception.  All welcome.

Queries to: David Cram

This book presents an edition of a previously unpublished notebook used by the seventeenth-century polymath John Wallis to teach language to the "deaf mute" Alexander Popham. Under the terms of the law Popham would not have been able to inherit his family title and property if he had remained unable to speak. This is one of the most famous cases in the history of deaf education. The notebook, which has recently come to light in the Popham family mansion, provides fascinating insights into the details of the instruction. It is a rare example of a manual tailor-made for the instruction of a known individual and its author is one of the foremost scientists of the period. If it had not been lost the work would have been a key document in the dispute between John Wallis and William Holder, both distinguished fellows of the Royal Society, on whose method had been successful in teaching Popham to speak. The Popham Notebook provides essential evidence towards the resolution of a debate that has been widely discussed ever since.

David Cram and Jaap Maat place the work in its personal, social, and scientific contexts. They include a range of additional contemporary texts and provide a clear text with helpful annotations. The edition provides the means for a thorough reassessment of the work's contemporary value. Their introduction also includes a discussion of the theoretical issues underpinning the teaching of language to the deaf.

John Wallis (1618-1703) was a founder member of the Royal Society, a mathematician and pioneer of calculus, and a linguist whose work included the groundbreaking tract on phonetics, De Loquela (1653).

David Cram is an Emeritus Fellow of Jesus College, formerly Senior Research Fellow and Lecturer in Linguistics. By background and training he is a theoretical linguist, but the bulk of his research has concerned the history of ideas about language in the seventeenth century, on topics ranging from philosophical languages to linguistic eschatology. He is co-editor, with Jaap Maat, of George Dalgarno on Universal Language: The Art of Signs (1661), The Deaf and Dumb Man's Tutor (1680), and the Unpublished Papers (OUP, 2001).

Jaap Maat is Lecturer in Philosophy at the University of Amsterdam, and is a member of the Institute for Logic, Language and Computation (ILLC). He has published widely on the history of linguistic ideas and the history of logic. He is a founding editor of History of Humanities and co-editor, with David Cram, of George Dalgarno on Universal Language: The Art of Signs (1661), The Deaf and Dumb Man's Tutor (1680), and the Unpublished Papers(OUP, 2001).

London Shakespeare Seminar

LSS: Senate Room, Senate House, Malet Street, London WC1E 7HU
Monday 22 January: 5.15-7pm

  • Line Cottegnies (Paris Sorbonne), ‘Henry’s “Bruised helmet”: Armour and Weaponry in Henry V’
  • Liam Semler (Sydney), ‘SysEd vs Ardenspace: The Evolution and Aims of the Imaginarium Learning Modules on the Shakespeare Reloaded Website’

All welcome. The session consists of two 25-minute papers, followed by shared questions and then a glass of wine.

London Shakespeare Seminars

This long-established annual seminar series provides a wide and significant intellectual/social resource for early modernists in the London area. Seminars will take place at 17.15 on Mondays in the Senate Room, Senate House, University of London, Malet Street.

Each seminar will comprise two 25-minute talks followed by shared questions. There will then be drinks and, for those who wish to join us, we will move on to dinner at a nearby restaurant.

Jointly organised by the London Shakespeare Centre and the Institute for English Studies, University of London. The details of all seminars are published by Institute of English Studies, Senate House, please visit their website here.

For more information and to be included on the LSS mailing list please contact Gemma Miller at this email address:

London Renaissance Seminar: Clothing the Renaissance

1 – 6 p.m., Saturday 20 January 2018
Keynes Library, Birkbeck School of Arts, 43 Gordon Square, Bloomsbury

Join London Renaissance Seminar for an afternoon of new research and inter-disciplinary discussions exploring clothing and accessories in the Renaissance.

Programme Summary:

1.00pm Coffee

1.20-2.00 Eleanor Lowe, ‘ “Scouring faults”: Linen, Cleanliness and Early Modern Drama’

2.00 – 2.40 Hester Lees-Jeffries ,‘Shakespeare’s Tailors’

2.40 – 3.30pm discussion

3.00-3.30 Coffee

3.30 Rebecca Unsworth, ‘Doublets in Early Modern Europe’

4.10-4.50 Natasha Awais-Dean ‘Men and Jewellery in Renaissance Portraiture’

4.50 – 5.10 Discussion

Organisers: Sue Wiseman and Sarah Birt

The London Renaissance Seminar (LRS) is a forum for the discussion of all aspects of early modern history, literature, and culture. It meets regularly at Birkbeck School of Arts, 43 Gordon Square. Anyone with a serious academic interest in the Renaissance is welcome and no registration is necessary.

For further information about LRS contact Sue Wiseman. To join the LRS mailing list, please contact Tom Healy.

CALL FOR ARTICLES: Public Medievalist Special Series—Gender, Sexism, and the Middle Ages

If 2017 has taught us anything, it’s that sexism remains rampant in our society. In a year that began with the Women’s March and ended with #metoo, grappling with the way that our society defines and treats people based upon their gender is more relevant than ever. And just as with race, many of our present perceptions of gender have been shaped by both medieval history and contemporary fantasies about the medieval past.

A New Special Series
Beginning in 2018, The Public Medievalist will launch a new special series: Gender, Sexism, and the Middle Ages. Like our ongoing Race, Racism and the Middle Ages series, our gender series will explore the complex and fascinating ways that medieval people understood and performed their genders, will disrupt myths about gender binaries in the past, and will examine how myths about medieval gender shape masculinity and femininity in the present. We’re soliciting articles on any and all aspects of medieval gender, or on gender and medievalism in the modern world. We will be accepting submissions on a rolling basis.

We’re interested both in fresh ideas and in adaptations of your existing work or work-in-progress. The only critical element is that they be geared toward a public audience, which the TPM editors are happy to help you with. Appropriate topics might include, but are certainly not limited to:
  • Debunking myths about medieval gender and gender roles (both male and female)
  • Gender non-conformists
  • Women in the medieval workforce
  • “Chivalry”
  • Queenship and kingship
  • Gender in neomedieval entertainment (games, film, television, fiction)
  • Gender and medieval literature
  • Medieval people who were transgender, genderqueer, or nonbinary
  • Intersectional identities (gender and faith, gender and race, gender and class, etc.)

We encourage submissions from scholars at any point in their career, as well as medievalists outside the traditional boundaries of the academy. And, we are particularly interested in submissions about medieval gender outside of the confines of Western Europe.

Feel free to pitch us an idea or send a full submission to, and be sure to consult our guidelines for prospective authors before submitting.

Cambridge Seminar in Early Modern Scholarship and Religion, Inaugural Meeting

Friday 19th January, 12:30-14:00, Old Combination Room, Trinity College.

The session will open with a roundtable discussion on the topic ''Beyond Christian Hebraism: Recent contributions to the Christian Study of Judaism''.

Suggested Readings:

1) Scott Mandelbrote and Joanna Weinberg, eds., Jewish Books and their Readers (Leiden, 2016), especially Mandelbrote and Weinberg, 'Introduction'; Grafton, '"Pandects of the Jews": A French, Swiss and Italian Prelude to John Selden'.

2) Theodor Dunkelgrün, 'The Christian Study of Judaism in Early Modern Europe, in Jonathan Karp and Adam Sutcliffe (eds.), The Cambridge History of Judaism: Vol. 7: The Early Modern World, 1500-1815 (Cambridge, 2017).

3) Henk Nellen, Dirk van Miert, et als, eds., Scriptural Authority and Biblical Criticism in the Dutch Golden Age: God's Word Questioned (Oxford, 2017), especially Henk Nellen and Piet Steenbakkers, 'Biblical Philology in the Long Seventeenth Century'; Dirk van Miert, 'The Janus Face of Scaliger's Philological Heritage'; Anthony Grafton, 'Spinoza's Hermeneutics'; Scott Mandelbrote, 'Witches and Forgers'; Jezte Touber, 'Biblical Philology and Hermeneutical Debate in the Dutch Republic in the Second Half of the Seventeenth Century'.

Please address any queries to Tim Twining

Oxford Seminar in the History of Alchemy and Chemistry, 2018

The seminar, usually held each year in May-June, is being moved forward to January 2018, in order to coincide with the visit of our colleague, the distinguished historian of chemistry Professor Emeritus Bernadette Bensaude Vincent (Université Paris 1 Panthéon Sorbonne), to the Maison Française d’Oxford in January-February 2018.

All seminars are kindly hosted by the Maison Française (2-10 Norham Rd., Oxford), and supported by SHAC. They will as usual take place 15.00-17.00 on Wednesday afternoons. Attendance is free, and all with an interest in the history of alchemy and chemistry are welcome, particularly postgraduate students and other younger scholars. The programme is as follows:

January 17tth

Sofie Jaeger ( KCL). “Pulling the Receipts”: gender, alchemy and intellectual networks in early modern England.

Mariana Sanchez Daza (Paris Diderot). Alchemy in the Viceroyalty of Peru in the seventeenth-century.

Organizers: Marie Thébaud-Sorger (CNRS, MFO), John Perkins (Oxford Brookes), John Christie (University of Oxford). For further information, contact:

History of Pre-Modern Medicine seminars

The History of Pre-Modern Medicine seminar series returns this month. The 2017–18 series – organised by a group of historians of medicine based at London universities and hosted by the Wellcome Library – will conclude with four seminars.

The series will be focused on pre-modern medicine, which we take to cover European and non-European history before the 20th century (antiquity, medieval and early modern history, some elements of 19th-century medicine). The seminars are open to all.


Tuesday 16 January: Dr Catherine Rider (University of Exeter), ‘Medieval Ideas about Infertility and Old Age’

Tuesday 30 January: Prof Guido Alfani (Bocconi University, Milan), ‘Plague in Italy and Europe during the seventeenth century: epidemiology and impact’

Tuesday 13 February: Dr William Tullet (King’s College London), ‘Smell and Medical Efficacy Eighteenth-Century England’

Tuesday 27 February: Dr Dror Weil (Max Planck Institute for the History of Science, Berlin), ‘Bodies Translated: The Circulation of Arabo-Persian Physiological Theories in Late Imperial China’

All seminars will take place in the Wellcome Library, 183 Euston Road, London NW1 2BE. Doors at 6pm prompt, seminars will start at 6.15pm.

Organising Committee: Elma Brenner (Wellcome Library), Michael Brown (Roehampton), Elena Carrera (QMUL), Sandra Cavallo (RHUL), John Henderson (Birkbeck, London), William MacLehose (UCL), Anna Maerker (KCL), Patrick Wallis (LSE), Ronit Yoeli-Tlalim (Goldsmiths).

For more details see:

Ross MacFarlane
Research Development Lead
Collections and Research
Wellcome Collection
183 Euston Road
London NW1 2BE
United Kingdom

T +44 (0)20 7611 7340
Wellcome's Free Museum and Library for the Incurably Curious

Now showing
Can Graphic Design Save Your Life?
7 September–14 January 2018

Ayurvedic Man: Encounters with Indian medicine
16 November–8 April 2018

Permanent exhibitions
Medicine Man | Medicine Now | Reading Room

Wellcome exists to improve health for everyone by helping great ideas to thrive. We're a global charitable foundation, both politically and financially independent. We support scientists and researchers, take on big problems, fuel imaginations and spark debate.

The Wellcome Trust is a charity registered in England and Wales, no. 210183. Its sole trustee is The Wellcome Trust Limited, a company registered in England and Wales, no. 2711000 (whose registered office is at 215 Euston Road, London NW1 2BE, UK)

CALL FOR PAPERS: Digital Defoe: Studies in Defoe & His Contemporaries, Fall 2018

Digital Defoe: Studies in Defoe & His Contemporaries is seeking papers for its next issue (Issue 10.1, Fall 2018). Articles that explore any area relating to Defoe and/or his contemporaries are welcome!

In addition to traditional scholarly papers, we welcome essays on fresh pedagogical approaches to the works of Defoe and his contemporaries. We also particularly encourage the submission of innovative digital and multimedia projects.

Please direct queries and submissions to Dr. Adam Sills & Dr. Chris Loar.

Deadline for submissions is 1 May 2018.

Archived issues of the journal are available at Digital Defoe

Exhibition and Lecture: Ceaseless motion: William Harvey's experiments in circulation

Royal College of Physicians, 
11 St Andrews Place, 
Regent's Park, 
London NW1 4LE

19 January 2018 to 26 July 2018

Library, Archive and Museum
Telephone: +44 (0)20 3075 1543

Opening January 2018, a new exhibition coinciding with the Royal College of Physicians' (RCP's) 500th anniversary exploring the life, work and legacy of revolutionary anatomist William Harvey – the physician who revealed the secrets of circulation.

The 'Ceaseless motion: William Harvey's experiments in circulation' exhibition runs from 19 January to 26 July 2018, and is open Monday–Friday, 9am–5pm.

William Harvey (1578–1657) was an anatomist and physician with an insatiable curiosity about the inner workings of all living creatures. Harvey lived through an extraordinary age of scientific revolution, to which he would contribute with his own discovery on the heart and blood circulation.

Within his London home, Harvey conducted countless experiments and observed the beating hearts of many animals, including dogs, eels, crows and even wasps. As an anatomist, he was able to dissect the bodies of hanged men, in the anatomy theatre at the Royal College of Physicians.

It is absolutely necessary to conclude that the blood is in a state of ceaseless motion; that this is the function which the heart performs by means of its pulse; and that this is the sole and only end of the motion and contraction of the heart. William Harvey, 1628 

Oil on canvas portrait of William Harvey by unknown artist, c.1650. (detail) 

In 1628, after 10 years of painstaking solitary research, Harvey at last published his discovery in a book, known as De motu cordis. His idea, that blood is pumped around the body by the heart in a state of ceaseless motion, proved highly controversial to some, challenging 1,500 years of established scientific and medical belief.

Harvey encouraged his fellow physicians ‘to search and study out the secrets of nature by way of experiment’. His legacy of curiosity, research and discovery has had a lasting impact on the practice and science of medicine. This exhibition places William Harvey at the heart of the RCP as it celebrates its 500th anniversary.


William Harvey's demonstration rod. Whalebone and silver c.1616

Exhibition launch
Join us on Thursday 18 January to celebrate the opening of the first exhibition in the RCP's 500th anniversary year with a lecture by Professor Andrew Cunningham on the life and legacy of William Harvey. The lecture is free to attend but booking is essential.
Book via Eventbrite

Visiting information
The exhibition will be open from 19 January to 26 July 2018, Monday–Friday, 9am–5pm.
Opening times may vary – check the RCP visiting page for closure days before your visit.

Museum lates
New for 2018, the RCP museum including the 'Ceaseless motion' exhibition will be open until 8pm on the first Thursday of the month. No booking required, free museum and exhibition entry.

Forthcoming RCP museum lates:
Thursday 1 February 2018, 5–8pm
Thursday 1 March 2018, 5–8pm
Thursday 3 May 2018, 5–8pm
Thursday 7 June 2018, 5–8pm.

Exhibition team and contributors

Exhibition team: Kristin Hussey, Matthew Wood, Pamela Forde, Natalie Craven and Katie Birkwood.

Exhibition contributors: National Portrait Gallery, Royal College of Surgeons, Science Museum, British Cardiovascular Society, Worcester College, University of Oxford and Wellcome Collection.

Special thanks to: Chocolate Films, Spectrum Drama, Professor Ludmilla Jordanova and Professor Andrew Cunningham.

For all media enquiries please contact Discover Medical London

Price to attend: Free
Contact us

Centre for Low Countries Studies - 2018 Annual Lecture: Frans-Willem Korsten on The Cruelty of Freedom

Frans-Willem Korsten will present his latest book, A Dutch Republican Baroque: Theatricality, Dramatization, Moment and Event (UAP, 2017). He will discuss how two aesthetic formal modes, theatre and drama, were dynamically related to two political concepts, event and moment. This will lead to a new historical perspective on the Baroque as a specifically Dutch republican one, while at the same time demonstrating the relevance of analysing early modern literature by means of 20th century philosophy.


Haldane Room
Wilkins Building
University College London
Gower Street

Centre for Low Countries Studies
Organiser of 2018 Annual Lecture: Frans-Willem Korsten on The Cruelty of Freedom

The mission of the UCL Low Countries Centre is to study a series of historic relationships and to nurture their further development in the present day:
  • Connections between the Low Countries and neighbouring lands, including most importantly Great Britain
  • Encounters between diverse groups, religions, and cultures within the Low Countries themselves
  • Interactions of Dutch-speaking people around the globe, wherever Dutch language and culture have had or currently have an impact.

CALL FOR PAPERS: Dutch Seminar in Early Modern Philosophy V

Utrecht University (NL), 30-31 May 2018
Submission deadline: 15 January 2018 #DSEMP

The Dutch Seminar in Early Modern Philosophy brings together advanced students and established scholars to discuss the latest work in early modern philosophy, broadly conceived. Built on the success of the previous 2014–2017 editions, which gathered philosophers from all over the world, the Seminar offers workshop-style collaborations to stimulate scholarly exchange. The language of presentation and discussion is English.

Keynote speakers

Professor Christia Mercer (Columbia University)
Professor Karin de Boer (KU Leuven)

We welcome abstracts for talks on any topic related to early modern philosophy, broadly understood (roughly the period 1500–1800 CE). We are especially interested in presentations that discuss philosophical issues or works that have received less sustained scholarly attention, including, but not limited to: non canonical authors and traditions, anonymous texts, methodological reflections on doing Early Modern philosophy.

Please submit abstracts (400 words max.) suitable for anonymous review in PDF to our EasyChair page

Deadline: 15 January 2018

Decisions will follow by early March. Abstracts will be peer-reviewed. We will send reviewers’ reports with useful feedback on abstracts to all who wish to receive this.

Attendance is free and all are welcome, especially students. No financial assistance can be provided to support travel expenses and accommodation.

Contact Chris Meyns @chrismeyns with any questions.


Andrea Sangiacamo (University of Groningen)
Chris Meyns (Utrecht University)

The Dutch Seminar is an activity of:
Department of Philosophy, Utrecht University
Descartes Centre for the History and Philosophy of Science and the Humanities

Groningen Centre for Medieval and Early Modern Thought
Faculty of Philosophy, University of Groningen
OZSW Study Group in Early Modern Philosophy

Dr Chris Meyns | Visiting Fellow, Center for Philosophy of Science, University of Pittsburgh | | on Twitter | Google Scholar | LinkedIn

FUNDING: Beckman Center for the History of Chemistry at the Chemical Heritage Foundation (CHF) - Two-Year 80/20 Postdoctoral Fellowships

The Beckman Center for the History of Chemistry at the Chemical Heritage Foundation (CHF), an independent research library in Philadelphia, PA, invites applications for new multi-year postdoctoral fellowships, as well as for one-year and short-term visiting fellowships in the history of science, medicine, technology, and industry.

Two-Year 80/20 Postdoctoral Fellowships:

CHF is pleased to announce the launch of its new 80/20 postdoctoral fellowship program: these new fellowships reflect the Beckman Center’s commitment to providing career-launching fellowships for recent PhDs and its support for the career diversity initiatives of the American Historical Association and affiliated scholarly societies. The 80/20 postdoctoral fellowship program will allow the Beckman Center’s postdocs to build skills that can enhance their opportunities outside the academy or their work within it. Fellows will spend one day a week working closely with a CHF staff member from the library, museum, publications team, Center for Applied History, outreach group, Oral History Program, archives, or digital library team on developing skills in one of two areas: collections and curation, or outreach and exhibitions. The other four days each week, postdoctoral fellows will have access to CHF’s considerable resources and ample time to develop and publish their own research. Applicants for postdoctoral fellowships must have their PhD in hand before the July prior to the start of the fellowship and must have earned that degree within the last five years. Postdoctoral fellowship stipends are $45,000, paid in monthly installments. For more information or to apply, go to:

Visiting Research Fellowships:

Short Term and Dissertation Fellows take part in the activities of a class of roughly 18 fellows each year, creating a vibrant international community of scholars whose work is in some way tied to CHF’s collections (see below) in the history of the life sciences, chemistry, and related sciences. Applications come from scholars in a wide range of disciplines across the humanities and social sciences. To see this year's list, go to:

Dissertation Fellowships
9 Months in Residence; open to graduate students at the dissertation stage • $26,000

Short-Term Fellowships
1–4 Months in Residence; open to all scholars and researchers • $3,000 per month

Collection Strengths:
The research collections at CHF range chronologically from the fifteenth century to the present and include 6,000 rare books, significant archival holdings, thousands of images, and a large artifact and fine arts collection, supported by over 100,000 reference volumes and journals. Within the collections there are many areas of special strength, including: alchemy, mining & metallurgy, dyeing and bleaching, balneology, gunpowder and pyrotechnics, gas-lighting, books of secrets, inorganic and organic chemistry, biochemistry, food chemistry, and pharmaceuticals.

The deadline for all fellowship applications is January 16, 2018. Please see our website for more information or to apply:

Leopoldina Akademie Freundeskreis: “Johann-Lorenz-Bausch Fellowship” for 2018

The Leopoldina Akademie Freundeskreis e.V. announces the “Johann-Lorenz-Bausch Fellowship” for 2018. Johann Lorenz Bausch (1605-1665) founded the Academia naturae curiosorum, the Leopoldina, on 1 January 1652 in Schweinfurt together with four other physicians. This makes it the oldest continuously existing academy of medicine and the natural sciences in the world. The Leopoldina was appointed as the German National Academy of Sciences on 14 July 2008. It addresses key issues of particular significance for the future of society from a scientific perspective and independently of economic or political interests, shares its findings with policymakers and the public, and puts these issues up for discussion on a national and international level. In addition, it takes on the classic tasks of an academy by carrying out research, for example in the field of the history of science, and promoting young scientists and researchers.

Target group and possible topics
The fellowship is aimed at young scientists and researchers who work academically in the field of the history of science in a narrower or wider sense. This announcement is not restricted to specific disciplines or methodical approaches.

The place of work for the duration of the fellowship is the Leopoldina Centre for Science Studies in Halle (Saale). During your research you have access to the extensive collection at the Leopoldina library and archives as well as the local and regional libraries and archives. You can find a list of the research subjects currently being pursued at the Leopoldina Centre of Studies here: Link. Other subjects that deal with history of science, the academy’s history, its publications and its members’ works and contributions are also possible though.

Services and funding
The scholarship grant is €5,000 maximum. The grant can be awarded for a period of up to four months and amounts to €1,250 a month.

The Leopoldina Centre of Studies assists fellows logistically. It provides the necessary working environment for the fellows’ work and facilitates exchange with other ongoing research projects and Leopoldina members.

Application requirements
A full application includes the following documents:
  • Project description (max. 2 DIN A4 pages) with detailed description of the work to be carried out at the Leopoldina in Halle
  • Academic curriculum vitae
  • List of publications, if applicable
  •  Informal letter of recommendation

Application deadline and process
Please send your application with the enclosed documents mentioned above to the following address by 31 January 2018:

Leopoldina Akademie Freundeskreis e.V.
Postfach 11 05 43
06019 Halle (Saale)

An academic selection committee will shortlist the candidates soon after the application deadline.

Please do not hesitate to contact the Director of the Leopoldina Centre for Science Studies Prof. Dr. Rainer Godel if you have any questions.

Linda Molnar
Studentische Hilfskraft

Deutsche Akademie der Naturforscher Leopoldina e.V.
– Nationale Akademie der Wissenschaften –
Emil-Abderhalden-Straße 36

D-06108 Halle (Saale)
Tel. +49 (0)345 472 39-117
Fax +49 (0)345 472 39-139

Vereinsregisternummer 20649
Steuernummer 110/142/41061

Die Leopoldina nimmt als Nationale Akademie der Wissenschaften Deutschlands mit ihren rund 1500 Mitgliedern zu den wissenschaftlichen Grundlagen politischer und gesellschaftlicher Fragen unabhängig und öffentlich Stellung. Sie vertritt die deutsche Wissenschaft in internationalen Gremien und handelt zum Wohle der Menschen und der Gestaltung ihrer Zukunft.

The German National Academy of Sciences Leopoldina brings together the expertise of some 1,500 distinguished scientists to bear on questions of social and political relevance, publishing unbiased and timely scientific opinions. The Leopoldina represents the German scientific community in international committees and pursues the advancement of science for the benefit of humankind and for a better future.

FUNDING: Funded PhD in the History of Early Modern Science - Iconography of Early Modern Scientific Instruments.

The Interdisciplinary Centre for Science and Technology Studies (IZWT) at Wuppertal University invites applications for a

PhD position (65%, E 13 TVL) in History of Early Modern Science

starting April 1, 2018. This position is part of the research project “Iconography on Early Modern Scientific Instruments” (for a description of the project see below), funded by the German Research Foundation (DFG).

The project Iconography on Early Modern Scientific Instruments specifically analyses the imagery of such instruments and aims at a systematic analysis of the multifaceted visual material on the instruments, asking for its role in the various contexts of the adorned instruments (genesis, function, use).   Requests concerning the project should be directed to Volker Remmert.


A master’s degree in history of science or history of art and a specialization in the history of early modern science or art. Cf. the official posting can be found here (in German).

Applications referring to the job opening 17255 should include a c.v., copies of diploma, research profile. Applications should be submitted electronically to Univ.- Prof. Dr. Volker Remmert

The University is working towards increasing the role of women in research positions. Women will be preferentially employed if their qualification and records of research are equal to other candidates. This does not affect the preferential employment of handicapped persons if their qualification is equal.

Applications should arrive no later than January 19, 2018.

Iconography on Early Modern Scientific Instruments

During the Scientific Revolution scientific instruments, such as astrolabes, air pumps, microscopes and telescopes became increasingly important for the study of nature. In the early modern period they had not yet reached the status of standardized and impersonal means to study nature. Rather they usually were unique items, which by their function as well as their design could serve the mediation between scholars, social elites and beyond. In this context the iconography on the instruments played a crucial role. In fact a great number of early modern instruments are adorned with images, that in themselves have no relevance for the use of the instruments, as for instance the depiction of Atlas and Hercules on an astrolabe by Praetorius (1568, Dresden) or the line of tradition in astronomy and geometry on Bürgi’s astronomical clock (1591, Kassel) stretching from the church fathers to Copernicus. As of now such imagery on instruments and its contexts have only sporadically been analysed.

The project Iconography on early modern scientific instruments specifically analyses the imagery on the instruments. It aims for the first time at a systematic analysis of the multifaceted visual material on the instruments asking for its role in the various contexts of the adorned instruments (genesis, function, use) and its importance for setting up or supporting stories/histories of success and relevance within the emerging field of the sciences. The iconography points to quite a few significant topics as, for instance, statements of specific positions in theoretical debates (e.g. Copernican question), mediation and illustration of knowledge, in particular by picturing the usability of the instruments, or the role of instruments as patronage artefacts with specific iconographic programmes.

The analysis of the imagery is likewise highly relevant in order to understand the intellectual, cultural and artistic contexts shaping and determining the production of instruments in the early modern period. It opens a window on the investigation of collaborative processes during the conception, design and construction of instruments in the multi-layered field between instrument makers, artists, artisans, patrons and scholars.

HAPP Network Summer School on History of Physics: Scientific Instruments and Environmental Physics

20th-24th August 2018
Brasenose College
University of Oxford

This Summer School will survey the history of scientific instruments and seeks to contribute to the understanding of the development of recent climate science by exploring the role played by the physical sciences. Climate change has been an important concern for historians of science since the mid-1990s. There have been foundational accounts of the discovery of global warming and subtle portraits of changing views of climate and place over time, along with detailed studies of the history of meteorology and the rise of numerical modelling, and vital accounts of climate discourse and scepticism. Underlying this scholarship are abiding concerns with the diverse ways that climate has forced reassessments of scale, demanded new engagements between local histories and global measures, and engaged different sorts of audiences. Alongside these accounts are a range of studies that consider how instruments and tools of science have been deployed in the field to gather data in the service of such global projects. These accounts link supposedly metropolitan physical sciences with stories of empire and expose the challenges of making instruments work in remote locations. Finally, these studies will help historians of physics today engage creatively with the issues important in understanding the implications of global warming in distinctively different locales. The Summer School sessions will focus on various scientific tools and techniques, including those used to investigate and represent the climate, linking scientific inquiry to the development and trade in specialist instruments. There will be visits to the Museum of the History of Science at Oxford and to the Rutherford Appleton Laboratory.

The Summer School will be held in the historic surroundings of Brasenose College at the University of Oxford with the provisional programme available here. Registration to attend the Summer School with payment of the registration fee of £195 which will also include the cost of all lunches and dinners can be done here by the registration deadline of Friday 30th March 2018. Bed and breakfast accommodation in rooms at Brasenose College for the duration of the Summer School can be booked and paid for here. There will be visits to the Museum of the History of Science at Oxford and the Rutherford Appleton Laboratory as part of the programme. A limited number of bursaries to cover the registration fee are available to students and postdoctoral researchers from developing countries - to apply please send a request or any queries to .

CALL FOR PAPERS: "Exile and Migration" in the 2019 Shakespeare Jahrbuch

The 2019 volume of Shakespeare Jahrbuch will be a special issue on “Exile and Migration”. The editorial board invites essays on the following topics:

• Exile and migration in Shakespearean drama
• Shakespeare read / performed in exile
• Shakespeare across borders
• Transcultural migrations of Shakespeare’s works
• Exile and migration in the early modern age
• Shakespeare and the so-called “refugee crisis”
• …

Papers to be published in Shakespeare Jahrbuch should be formatted according to our style sheet, which can be downloaded from

Please send your manuscripts (of not more than 6,000 words) to the general editor of Shakespeare Jahrbuch, Professor Sabine Schülting (email:, by 30 April 2018.

Shakespeare Jahrbuch is a is a peer-reviewed academic journal, which is listed in the European Reference Index for the Humanities and Social Sciences (ERIH Plus).

CALL FOR PAPERS: Attention and Distraction: A Graduate Conference

The Faculty of English at the University of Cambridge is pleased to announce its annual graduate conference on literature before 1750, to be held on Friday 20 April 2018.

Proposals are invited from MA students, PhD students, and recent graduates for papers on the theme of “Attention and Distraction.” For pre-modern readers, what did it mean to “attend” (or fail to attend) to a text? What roles do boredom and distraction have to play in the reading process? How do we attend to pre-modern literature in our moment of supposedly short attention spans?

Topics might include:
  • The attention economy
  • Readerly distraction and boredom
  • Prayer and concentration
  • Popular entertainment and divertissement
  • "Information overload" 

Proposals are due Wednesday 31 January 2018. They should include a title, brief abstract (200 words), and a short biography including your university and department affiliation. Speakers will present for 15 minutes, with time for questions at the end.

Travel grants for speakers are available, and lunch and refreshments will be provided.

Please direct proposals and questions to For more information, please visit our website at

CALL FOR PAPERS: Thomas Harriot Seminar

Are you a researcher working on the late-sixteenth or early seventeenth century? Do you have research interests in any of the following fields: history of science, history of mathematics, the history of maritime exploration, navigation and early colonial America? If so, you might be interested in the Thomas Harriot Seminar, which meets annually (alternating between Durham University and Birkbeck, University of London). The seminar is named after the Elizabethan mathematician Thomas Harriot (1560-1621), and is devoted to the study of all of the areas in which Harriot was involved, this includes topics such as astronomy, atomism, alchemy and metallurgy, optics, statics and mechanics, algebra, geometry, number theory, navigational mathematics, maritime history, ballistics, the art of war, and early linguistics and cryptography. We would particularly welcome papers from younger scholars working in any of these fields (or cognate areas).

For more information please contact the Chairman, Dr Stephen Clucas or visit the Seminar’s website: Thomas Harriot Seminar

Dr Stephen Clucas,
Editor, Intellectual History Review

Reader in Early Modern Intellectual History,
Birkbeck, University of London,
Malet Street,
London WC1E 7HX

Tel: 020 3073 8421