Hydropathic Highway to Health

Jane B. Donegan, “Hydropathic Highway to Health”: Women and Water-Cure in Antebellum America. Contributions in Medical Studies, Number 17. New York: Greenwood Press, 1986. Checked out through OU’s Library.  As often seems to be the case, Hyropathic Highway to Health offers a history of hydrotherapy intertwined with one of women’s health. Jane Donegan looks — primarily through a case study … More Hydropathic Highway to Health

The Science of Sympathy

The Science of Sympathy: Morality, Evolution, and Victorian Civilization, Rob Boddice Rob Boddice makes the argument in The Science of Sympathy that a new, scientific sympathy was developed in the mid- to late-nineteenth century by Charles Darwin and his (mostly) like-minded contemporaries, that this sympathy was at odds with what he terms “common compassion,” or vernacular … More The Science of Sympathy

Darwin and the Emergence of Evolutionary Theories of Mind and Behavior

Darwin and the Emergence of Evolutionary Theories of Mind and Behavior, Robert Richards The three chapters of Robert Richards’s work we were to focus on for class dealt with how a few prominent Victorian thinkers — with a decided emphasis on Charles Darwin and Herbert Spencer — integrated the theory of evolution with human morality and … More Darwin and the Emergence of Evolutionary Theories of Mind and Behavior

Science & Religion: A Global Perspective

This week’s readings took on a more global perspective, offering an increasingly holistic picture of what the relationship between science and religion — and the academic analysis of it — looks like. As was expressed in class, religions other than Christianity and locales outside the West have received scant attention from historians of science, and … More Science & Religion: A Global Perspective

Science & Religion: Debunking the Conflict Thesis

In my junior year as an undergraduate, I took a collaborative class titled, “The Darwin Course.” It was put together and led by a science education professor, and we covered the science of evolutionary theory (via physics, anthropology, geology, and biology professors in two-week stints), Charles Darwin’s formation of it, its troublesome reception (although this … More Science & Religion: Debunking the Conflict Thesis

“On the Frontier of the Empire of Chance”

Arwen Mohun, “On the Frontier of The Empire of Chance: Statistics, Accidents, and Risk in Industrializing America.” Science in Context 3 (2005): 337-357. In “On the Frontier of The Empire of Chance,” author Arwen Mohun examines the rise in statistics and probabilistic thinking in the American vernacular context from the late nineteenth through the early … More “On the Frontier of the Empire of Chance”

The Empire of Chance

The Empire of Chance: How Probability Changed Science and Everyday Life, Gerd Gigerenzer, Zeno Swijtink, Theodore Porter, Lorrain Daston, John Beatty, and Lorenz Krüger             In their collaborative work, authors Gerd Gigerenzer, Zeno Swijtink, Theodore Porter, Lorrain Daston, John Beatty, and Lorenz Krüger attempt a cohesive study of how the science of statistics “transformed our … More The Empire of Chance

Engineers of Happyland

Engineers of Happyland, Rudolf Mrázek          Rudolf Mrázek’s work, clothed in the language of a history of technology, was in fact not a history of technology at all. Instead, Mrázek artfully uses technology to discuss his real interest — nationalism and modernity in the colonial setting. Through the lenses of the ways that people make and … More Engineers of Happyland

“(Auto)mobility, Accidents, and Danger”

  “(Auto)mobility, Accidents, and Danger,” Technology and Culture             The format of this issue is different in that it starts out with the presentation of a simplistic framework proposed by Peter Norton, and the articles that follow employ that framework and the questions it urges, showing how it does and does not fit into much more … More “(Auto)mobility, Accidents, and Danger”