Lecture Visible Embryos: A History of Human Development

The Innes Lecture is an annual event exploring important developments in the history of science. This year’s lecture is given online by Professor Nick Hopwood,  Visible Embryos: A History of Human Development

We are used to seeing images of human embryos and fetuses everywhere: in classrooms, clinics and on the news.

We share ultrasound scans and use images to learn about human origins. Though debates over evolution and abortion sometimes make these pictures controversial, we tend to take them for granted.

But 250 years ago human development was nowhere to be seen. How did we get here?

This year’s Innes Lecture explores the links between two challenges: producing images of hidden objects and controlling human reproduction.

This event will be held virtually on Thursday, April 22nd. Registration is free.

Full information and details of how to attend can be found here:


Inter-Union Commission of History of Astronomy / Grants for Early Career Scholars / Meeting at Prague Congress 2021

Inter-Union Commission of History of Astronomy


The Inter-Union Commission of History of Astronomy (ICHA) is a joint commission of the International Union of History and Philosophy of Science and Technology (IUHPST)/ Division of History of Science and Technology and the International Astronomical Union (IAU).  ICHA receives financial support from the IUHPST and makes its home base in that Union.  Its connection to the IAU is through Commission C3 (History of Astronomy).


ICHA will meet during the upcoming 26th International Congress of History of Science and Technology (26th ICHST), which will be held 25-31 July 2021 (now virtually) in Prague, Czech Republic.  Those interested in the history of astronomy and astrophysics are encouraged to check out the sessions organized by ICHA and the other Commissions.  (Some details are below.)   The Congress program and registration instructions will be found at www.ichst2021.org  No formal membership is required to attend the Prague Congress or most of the subsidiary meetings, but registration is required.


Grants for Early Career Scholars


The ICHA is pleased to announce that it has secured modest funds to help defray meeting costs for early career scholars wishing to attend the Prague Congress or other meetings relevant to the history of astronomy.  Preference will be given to those presenting a paper or poster at the meeting.  If you wish to apply for a grant, please send an application email to Sara Schechner, Secretary of ICHA (schechn@fas.harvard.edu) describing the meeting you wish to attend and your role in it.  The application process will be managed by the Organizing Committee of IAU Commission C3.  We will begin to review applications for 2021 on April 20 in order to enable applicants to take advantage of the early registration discount for the Prague Congress.


Symposium on “Art, Image, and Astronomical Knowledge”


ICHA and the Commission on the History of Ancient and Medieval Astronomy (CHAMA) are jointly sponsoring a symposium at the Prague Congress on the theme of “Art, Image, and Astronomical Knowledge.”  It will address the question whether stand-alone images found in art (paintings, drawings, woodcuts, etchings, rock art, etc.) can serve as reliable and quantifiable evidence for explicating past observations of natural phenomena such as sunspots, solar eclipses, aurorae, comets, constellations, and crucial aspects of the Earth’s past climate.  Speakers will compare knowledge acquired by images (paintings, rock art) with knowledge acquired by words (descriptions, reports), by empirical methods (experiment, measurement, observation) and by formulas (theory, computer models).  Examples will range from the ancient and medieval world up to modern times and represent many cultures and geographic places.  A preliminary list of papers follows.


ORGANIZERS—Sara J. Schechner (Harvard University) and Shi Yunli (University of Science and Technology of China)




I. Transients and Comets


* Richard G. Strom (ASTRON & University of Amsterdam), “What can Neolithic imagery convey about bright stellar transients?”

* Anna Jerratsch (Max Planck Institute for History of Science), “The Many Face(t)s of Comets in Early Modernity.”

* John Drummond and Wayne Orchiston (University of Southern Queensland), “Mount Taranaki, the Great Comet of 1882, and the Genesis of Cometary Photography in New Zealand.”


II. Constellations


* Katie Boyce-Jacino (Arizona State University), “Star Atlas: Ancient Astronomy in the Planetarium.”

* Christiaan Sterken (University of Brussels), “Some Thoughts on Stellar Constellations in Rock Art.”

* Susanne M. Hoffman (Independent scholar), “Reconstruction of Historical Constellations.”

* Stamatina Mastorakou (University of Zurich), “The Hellenistic constellations through Words and Images.”


III. Art in General


* David DeVorkin (Smithsonian Institution), “Well then, who dug ‘them’ canals on Mars?”

* Huichih Chuang (Jiangsu Normal University), “Re-discussion about the Two Celestial Images Unearthed in Nara, Japan.”

* Rosalind Park (Independent scholar), “Art and Astronomical Knowledge at Dendera in the 1st Century BCE.”


IV. Related to Horoscopes or Astrology


* Michelle McCoy (University of Pittsburgh), “Planetary Position, Pictorial Composition: Visual Knowledge and the Eastern Eurasian Horoscope.”

* Elizabeth Minor and Robert Minor (Wellesley College / UC Berkeley), “An Early Representation of a Star Pattern on an Ancient Egyptian Coffin of the First Intermediate Period (2181-2040 BCE).”

* Mathieu Ossendrijver (Free University of Berlin), “Iconography and the Cross-Cultural Transformation of Zodiacal Astral Science in Antiquity.”

* John Steele (Brown University), “Images in Babylonian Astronomical and Astrological Texts.”


V. Culture at Large


* Sonje Brentjes (Max Planck Institute for History of Science), “Knowledge, Art and Politics in Copies of ‘Abd al-Rahman al-Sufi’s Book of the Star Constellations.”

* Yunli Shi (University of Science and Technology of China), “Charting the Chinese Sky with Western Observations: The Star Maps Made by Jesuit Astronomers in the Late Ming Dynasty Revisited.”

* B. S. Shylaja (Jawaharlal Nehru Planetraium, Bengaluru, India), “Search for Astronomical Records in Unconventional Sources.”

* Irina Vavilova (Main Astronomical Observatory of the NAS of Ukraine), “Archaeoastronomical Culture of the Ancestors Dated to the Paleolithic Times at the Territory of Modern Ukraine.”

CfP: Chemical Humanities & History of Chemistry (@HSS/SHOT, Nov 18-21 2021)

The History of Science Society (HSS) will hold its annual meeting on November 18-21, 2021 in New Orleans, Louisiana, USA, concurrently with the meeting of the Society for the History of Technology (SHOT). Current plans are for an onsite meeting, with accommodations for recorded presentations and a limited number of live online presentations. Meeting details, Call for Papers, and information about travel and dependent care grants are available here.

The History of Science Society Forum for the History of Chemical Sciences (FoHCS) invites proposals of no more than 250 words (2000 characters) for papers for a sponsored session(s) at the 2021 HSS annual meeting on the theme of “Chemical Humanities and History of Chemistry.” Across a range of fields, scholars in the humanities and social sciences are increasingly looking to subject matter and methods involving chemical substances, chemical concepts, and chemical data. This session brings representative work spanning these “chemical humanities” into conversation with scholarship in the history of chemical sciences. We ask, first, how this emerging scholarship might expand the boundaries of the history of chemical sciences, second, how insights from the history of chemical sciences might contribute to such interdisciplinary scholarship, and third, whether and how historians and other “chemical humanists” might productively collaborate with researchers in the chemical sciences themselves.

We would welcome contributions from historians of all specializations (including historians of premodern periods), as well as from scholars of STS, philosophy, anthropology, archaeology, geography, sociology, literature, studies of gender, race, and ethnicity, environmental studies, and food studies, among other fields. Papers might address how chemical knowledge (from any knowledge tradition), chemical practice, and materials themselves might inform or be informed by developments in history, philosophy, religious studies, political science, economics, law, anthropology, printing and publishing, or education. How does chemistry figure in theatre, arts, film, music, and literature? What are the salient chemical dimensions of human-environment interactions? How to overcome boundaries that exclude consideration of chemical aspects of these fields and endeavors, or of these fields and endeavors as “chemical”?

FoHCS will offer support for interested session participants wishing to submit their work to the journal AMBIX for consideration following the meeting.

If you do not wish to submit a paper for this session but are interested in the questions this session raises, be in touch! We’ll keep you in the loop.

Please note the following meeting-wide submission guidelines:

  • As noted above, abstracts should be no more than 250 words / 2000 characters
  • Please include a presentation title
  • Please include an institutional affiliation (or independent scholar) and title
  • Please include selfidentified race/ethnicity and gender (or “prefer not to answer”)
  • Participants need not be HSS members; all participants must register for meeting.
  • Submissions and presentations are subject to HSS guidelines (see meeting webpage)


Please submit proposals to FoHCS chair Evan Hepler-Smith (evan.heplersmith@duke.edu) no later than Wednesday April 7, 2021. Session organizers will notify all applicants by Tuesday April 13, 2021 and will submit the session proposal to HSS. Any papers we are unable to include in the organized session(s) may be submitted to HSS directly as individual papers or within sessions organized via the HSS collaboration portal (see meeting website). We would also be delighted to consider all proposals for future FoHCS-organized events that may be of interest to the proposer.

Thanks in advance for your submissions!

The Forum for the History of the Chemical Sciences (FoHCS) is a group of scholars and students whose aim is to promote research, education, and communication on the historical, social, and philosophical aspects of chemistry and related chemical sciences and technologies. FoHCS advances this goal by encouraging innovative research and teaching in the history of chemistry and the chemical sciences, improving the visibility of such research within the History of Science Society (HSS), fostering international communication and collaboration between individuals and institutions with an interest in chemical history, and identifying and creating new opportunities and resources for scholars who study the chemical sciences.

Re: “Another Silent Spring: Thinking about Environment and Health in the Era of COVID-19” An Online Lecture Series, Renmin University of China

Sponsored by the School of History, The Center for Ecological History and the Center for Medical History, Renmin University of China


Conveners: Shen Hou and Hao Chen (Renmin University of China)



Lecture 1

Mar. 17 (Wednesday)

Christof Mauch (The Rachel Carson Center for Environment and Society; Ludwig-Maximilian-Universität München), “The Plague Comes to America: Racism, Science and Politics in US History”


Lecture 2

April. 3 (Saturday)

Andy Horowitz (Tulane University), “New Orleans’s History, America’s Future: Katrina, Covid, and the Climate Crisis”


Lecture 3

April 14 (Wednesday)

Ari Larrisa Heinrich (Australia National University), “How China Became the ’Sleeping Lion’: Frankenstein’s Diplomacy”


Lecture 4

April 27 (Tuesday)

Mary Augusta Brazelton (University of Cambridge), “Mass Immunization and Disease Control in Modern China: From Public to Global Health, 1937-78”


Lecture 5

May 8 (Saturday)

Jennifer Derr (University of California, Santa Cruz), “The Alternate Histories and Analytical Possibilities of the Environmental Body: The View from 20th-Century Egypt”


Lecture 6

May 29 (Saturday)

Conevery Valencius (Boston College), “Health and Environment in the Early United States”


Lecture 7

June 8 (Tuesday)

Frédéric Keck (CNRS Laboratoire d’anthropologie sociale), “Pandemic Preparedness: From Avian Influenza to SARS-Cov”


Lecture 8

June 24 (Thursday)

Marco Armiero (Royal Institute of Technology in Stockholm), “Wasteocene. Stories of Contamination and Commoning”

H-Net Job Guide from 22 March 2021 to 29 March 2021

The following jobs were posted to the H-Net Job Guide from 22 March 2021 to 29 March 2021.  These job postings are included here based on the categories selected by the list editors for H-Sci-Med-Tech.  See the H-Net Job Guide website at http://www.h-net.org/jobs/ for more information.  To contact the Job Guide, write to jobguide@mail.h-net.org, or call +1-517-432-5134 between 9 am and 5 pm US Eastern time.


Hamilton College – Instructor or Visiting Assistant Professor of
History (History of Science)

CFP: Consortium Working Groups

The Consortium for History of Science, Technology and Medicine invites proposals for new online working groups focusing on specialized topics in the history of science, technology or medicine. This call is for groups that will meet during the 2021-22 academic year.

Working groups typically meet once per month. They foster a collegial and stimulating environment for scholars at all levels from around the world to work together in small groups, discussing works-in-progress and other literature of interest. Groups are hosted through the Consortium’s website. Participation will be promoted among the Consortium’s members, fellows and larger community. Individuals or groups can participate from anywhere via video conference.

We encourage proposals with a mix of conveners at different levels of seniority. Applications are due no later than May 1, 2021.

Learn more and propose a working group

Contact info@chstm.org with any questions regarding working groups.

Hagley History Hangout/New Episode Available!

New episode is available in the Hagley History Hangout—In this episode, Gregory Hargreaves interviews Danya Pilgrim about her book project “Gastronomic Alchemy: How Black Philadelphia Caterers Transformed Taste into Capital, 1790-1925.” In support of her research, Pilgrim, assistant professor at Temple University, received exploratory and Henry Belin du Pont research grants from the Hagley Center for the History of Business, Technology, & Society.


In “Gastronomic Alchemy,” Pilgrim reveals the development and efflorescence of a Philadelphia catering industry owned and operated by African American waiters, brokers, cooks, & others. Through their work, black caterers earned economic success and cultural influence in Philadelphia that combined to form meaningful capital, which helped to create and support a vibrant black community. By uncovering this process of capital formation, Dr. Pilgrim “illuminates how one group of African Americans fought for self-determination in every aspect of their lives.”

Interview available at  https://www.hagley.org/research/history-hangout-danya-pilgrim.


Recorded on Zoom and available anywhere once they are released, our History Hangouts include interviews with authors of books and other researchers who have use of our collections, and members of Hagley staff with their special knowledge of what we have in our stacks. We began the History Hangouts earlier this summer and now are releasing programs every two weeks on alternate Mondays. Our series is part of the Hagley from Home initiative by the Hagley Museum and Library. The schedule for upcoming episodes, as well as those already released, is available at  https://www.hagley.org/hagley-history-hangout.

11th European Spring School on History of Science and Popularization – Mahón (Spain)

11th European Spring School on History of Science and Popularization


Sources, histories, imaginations

Institut Menorquí d’Estudis, Mahón (Balearic Islands, Spain)            11-13 November 2021 (alternative date, 26-28 May 2022)

Organized by the Catalan Society for the History of Science

Coordinated by Francisco Javier Martínez, Celia Miralles-Buil, and Quim Bonastra


All the information about the School’s topics, schedule and program (keynote lectures, workshops and poster sessions) is available at the following website:  https://blogs.iec.cat/schct/11th-european-spring-school/ 

The 11th ESS is open to junior scholars and postgraduate students of both social sciences/humanities and scientific background, who will have a great opportunity to engage with cutting edge work and present their own contributions. The School will particularly favour proposals that cross boundaries between disciplines, temporal focus and working spaces. All participants are expected to take part in the discussions of the lectures and workshops, to visit and comment the posters exhibit and to engage in the mentoring and artistic sessions.

The deadline for proposals to the workshops and poster sessions is 21 May 2021. Please, send a 200-word abstract and a 1-page CV to 11thspringschool@gmail.com

A limited number of grants will be available for graduate students and early career researchers.

Virtual History of Nursing Events in April 2021

Upcoming online events at the Royal College of Nursing


Nursing a Pandemic: Leading Through COVID-19 (online event)

Thursday 8 April, 5.30pm

Join us for the fourth in a series of virtual events exploring nursing experiences of the COVID-19 Pandemic. In this event, Estephanie Dunn interviews two nurse leaders on their experiences during COVID-19. Interviewees include Trish Armstrong-Child, a registered general nurse and Chief Executive of Southport and Ormskirk Hospital NHS Trust.

Free and open to all. Book online here: https://www.rcn.org.uk/news-and-events/events/lib-nursing-a-pandemic-leading-through-covid-080421


Nurses That Roared: From Suffrage to Civil and Patient Rights

Friday 23 April, 5.30pm

Throughout history, nurses have raged and roared, disrupting the status quo and challenging established norms. In this talk Julie Attenborough and Lisa Reynolds fill some of the gaps in the popular history of nursing, from which nurses whose images do not fit a standard mould have been omitted or adapted. We will hear about Catherine Pine, who was deeply involved in the suffrage movement in the early twentieth century, Mabel Staupers who campaigned for the inclusion of Black nurses in the US Army and Navy during World War II and mental health nursing pioneer Annie Altschul, who fought for the rights of marginalised patients. Find out about the collective bravery of those nurses who, through their practice, challenged injustice, disrupted established gender and race roles and took charge of their own futures.

Free and open to all. Book online here: https://www.rcn.org.uk/news-and-events/events/lib-nurses-that-roared-230421