October 2018 – News from the Profession

2018 HIST Award

The History of Chemistry Division of the American Chemical Society is pleased to announce that Professor David E. Lewis of the University of Wisconsin—Eau Claire is the winner of the 2018 HIST Award for Outstanding Lifetime Achievement in the History of Chemistry. This international award has been granted since 1956 under sequential sponsorships by the Dexter Chemical Company, the Edelstein Foundation, the Chemical Heritage Foundation, and the History of Chemistry Division. The event includes presentation of a monetary prize and a plaque, a symposium honoring the work of Professor Lewis, and a lecture by the awardee, which was scheduled to take place on 21 August 2018, at the American Chemical Society’s annual Fall meeting in Boston, Massachusetts.

David Lewis is a product of the borderline bush area around Adelaide, South Australia. He moved into the suburbs in fourth grade, and stayed there throughout his education. He matriculated from Salisbury High School, and moved on to the University of Adelaide, where he graduated with Honors in Organic Chemistry in 1973. He continued with graduate research in natural products until he was beckoned to the United States and the state of Arkansas in 1977.

Professor Lewis earned tenure and the rank of Associate at Baylor University in 1988, but moved on to South Dakota State University, where he became a Full Professor in 1993. He was called to The University of Wisconsin- Eau Claire in 1997 as Chair of the Chemistry Department, where he continues a very active program in synthetic organic chemistry.

Chemists like Lewis, with his interests well outside the realm of chemistry (narrowly defined) do not always stick to the main road, and David gained an interest in the history of organic chemistry. He also joined the Division of the History of Chemistry and started publishing in the Bulletin for the History of Chemistry (now 15 papers, including two Best Paper Awards in 1997 and 2010). He served as the Chair of the Division from 2003-2005.

The area of interest for Professor Lewis has been organic chemistry in Russia, especially at Kazan Chemistry School. Not only has he become the leading scholar in this area, he is recognized by the Russians as the author of “a wonderful series of works devoted to the history of Russian chemistry.” His collected works were translated and published in Russian in 2016. He has been invited several times to give major lectures at Kazan and other cities in Russia. This September, he will, for the first time, deliver his talks in Russian. His 2012 book, Early Russian Organic Chemists and Their Legacy has been hailed as the most important contribution to this previously understudied area.

David Lewis has been one of the most frequent speakers at American Chemical Society meetings in the Division of the History of Chemistry over the last 25 years, and has contributed to many notable symposia (especially Characters in Chemistry). His work was recognized in 2012 with a DSc Degree from the University of Adelaide, and he was elected a Fellow of the Royal Society of Chemistry in 2015.

STEM Education Advisory Panel

The National Science Foundation (NSF), in consultation with the Department of Education, NASA and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) announced on 11 July 2018 the appointment of 18 members to a new advisory panel created to encourage U.S. scientific and technological innovations in education, as authorized by the American Innovation and Competitiveness Act.

Gabriela Gonzalez, deputy director of the Intel Foundation, Intel Corporation, will chair the new STEM Education Advisory Panel. David Evans, executive director of the National Science Teachers Association, will serve as vice chair.

Congress authorized creation of the STEM Education Advisory Panel to advise a group of federal organizations called the Committee on Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics Education (CoSTEM) on matters related to STEM education.

In particular, Congress authorized the panel to help identify opportunities to update the 2013-2018 Federal STEM Education 5-Year Strategic Plan, which CoSTEM developed to improve the efficiency, coordination and impact of federally supported STEM education investments.

In addition, the panel will assess CoSTEM’s progress in carrying out responsibilities mandated by the America COMPETES Reauthorization Act.

“This new panel has an opportunity to bring fresh eyes and novel approaches to CoSTEM’s next five-year strategic plan, which will help enhance the nation’s entire STEM ecosystem,” said NSF Director France Córdova, who co-chairs CoSTEM. “NSF continues to generate benefits for society through STEM research. To fulfill that mission, we and our federal partners need to make strategic investments to create new generations of discoverers.”

“This advisory panel is another strong step taken by this administration to advance educational options in the STEM fields,” said Secretary of Education Betsy DeVos, a CoSTEM member. “I look forward to working with this exceptional new group of STEM leaders to ensure we are constantly rethinking what education means for America’s students.”

“STEM is vital for NOAA to protect lives and property, enhance the economy, and conserve natural resources,” said NOAA acting undersecretary of commerce for oceans and atmosphere, retired Navy Rear Adm. Tim Gallaudet. “As a member of CoSTEM, I look forward to working with this distinguished panel and hearing their recommendations that will help advance these efforts.”

“NASA is proud of the many ways that its missions inspire the next generation of STEM leaders. Across the spectrum of our work, students and educators have many opportunities to learn from and engage with our work,” said NASA Administrator Jim Bridenstine, who co-chairs CoSTEM. “We’re going back to the moon and on to Mars, and we’re going to keep doing the amazing things that will help fill the pipeline of new explorers and create a bright future.”

The panel is composed of individuals from nonprofit, business, academic and informal education organizations. The members are:

For more information on the STEM Education Advisory Panel, please visit its website.

Narrative Science Project

The Narrative Science project is pleased to announce the launch of its website, and the start of a seminar series that will run in London throughout the rest of 2018 and to the end of summer in 2019. The website, which contains further information about the project and an introduction to its central ideas, can be found here: www.narrative-science.org

Each seminar will include two speakers. They will take place between 17:00 and 19:00 on the LSE campus in London, building KSW and room G.01. A sample of the seminars appears below.

6 Nov 2018
Julia Sánchez-Dorado (UCL) and Claudia Cristalli (UCL)
Colligation in Model Analysis: From Whewell’s Tides to the San Francisco Bay Model
Veronika Lipphardt (University College Freiburg)
TBA

20 Nov 2018
Caitlin Donahue Wylie (University of Virginia)
Narrating Disaster: A Method of Socialization in Engineering Laboratories
Sigrid Leyssen (University of Bucharest)
TBA

4 Dec 2018
Lukas Engelman (University of Edinburgh)
Epidemiology as Narrative Science: Outbreak Reports of the Third Plague Pandemic from 1894 to 1952
Sabine Baier (LSE and ETH Zürich)
TBA

The September HPS&ST Note

The September HPS&ST Note is on the web at https://www.hpsst.com/hpsst-note.html.

Contents

  • Introduction
  • 2019 IUHPST Essay Prize in History and Philosophy of Science.
  • 2018 British Society for History of Science, Pickstone Prize Shortlist
  • The Cavendish Laboratory
  • PhilPeople Directory
  • Opinion Page: Mario Bunge’s 99th Birthday
  • PhD Theses in HPS&ST Domain
  • Recent HPS&ST Research Articles
  • Recent HPS&ST Related Books
  • Coming HPS&ST Related Conferences

The website for the IHPST 2019 Conference in Thessaloniki, July 15-19, is now open. More conference news in a subsequent Note.

This HPS&ST monthly Note is sent to about 7,500 individuals who directly or indirectly have an interest in the connections of history and philosophy of science with theoretical, curricular, and pedagogical issues in science teaching, and/or interests in the promotion of more engaging and effective teaching of the history and philosophy of science. The Note is also sent to different HPS lists and to science education lists. It is an information list, not a discussion list.

The Note serves the diverse international community of HPS&ST scholars and teachers by disseminating information about events and publications that connect to HPS&ST concerns. Contributions to the Note (publications, thematic issues, conferences, Opinion Page, etc.) are welcome and should be sent direct to the editor: Michael R. Matthews, UNSW, m.matthews@unsw.edu.au.

In Memoriam: Jeff Hughes

It is with deep sadness that we announce the death of our esteemed former colleague Dr. Jeff Hughes.

From his appointment as one of CHSTM’s first permanent members of staff in 1993 to his retirement in 2017, Jeff made huge contributions to the Centre as an inspirational teacher, scholar and colleague. Jeff was known and respected worldwide as a leading figure in the history of science, and we join his many friends in the academy and beyond in expressing our sincere condolences to his family.

— Ian Burney, on behalf of the Centre for the History of Science, Technology and Medicine, University of Manchester

Request for Nominations for Voting Members on the Tobacco Products Scientific Advisory Committee

The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) is requesting nominations for members to serve on the Tobacco Products Scientific Advisory Committee, Office of Science, Center for Tobacco Products. FDA seeks to include the views of women and men, members of all racial and ethnic groups, and individuals with and without disabilities on its advisory committees and, therefore encourages nominations of appropriately qualified candidates from these groups.

Nominations received on or before 13 November 2018 will be given first consideration for membership on the Tobacco Products Scientific Advisory Committee. Nominations received after 13 November 2018 will be considered for nomination to the committee as later vacancies occur.

All nominations for membership should be sent electronically by logging into the FDA Advisory Nomination Portal online or by mail to Advisory Committee Oversight and Management Staff, Food and Drug Administration, 10903 New Hampshire Ave., Bldg. 32, Rm. 5103, Silver Spring, MD 20993-0002.

For Further Information Contact:

Regarding all nomination questions for membership, the primary contact is: Caryn Cohen, Office of Science, Center for Tobacco Products, Food and Drug Administration, Document Control Center, 10903 New Hampshire Ave., Bldg. 71, Rm. G335, Silver Spring, MD 20993-0002, 1-877-287-1373 (choose option 5), email: TPSAC@fda.hhs.gov.

Information about becoming a member on an FDA advisory committee can also be obtained by visiting FDA’s website.

Supplementary Information:

FDA is requesting nominations for voting members on the Tobacco Products Scientific Advisory Committee.

I. General Description of the Committee Duties

The Tobacco Products Scientific Advisory Committee (the Committee) advises the Commissioner of Food and Drugs (the Commissioner) or designee in discharging responsibilities related to the regulation of tobacco products. The Committee reviews and evaluates safety, dependence, and health issues relating to tobacco products and provides appropriate advice, information, and recommendations to the Commissioner.

II. Criteria for Voting Members

The Committee consists of 12 members including the Chair. Members and the Chair are selected by the Commissioner or designee from among individuals knowledgeable in the fields of medicine, medical ethics, science, or technology involving the manufacture, evaluation, or use of tobacco products. Almost all non-Federal members of this committee serve as Special Government Employees. The Committee includes nine technically qualified voting members, selected by the Commissioner or designee. The nine voting members include seven members who are physicians, dentists, scientists, or healthcare professionals practicing in the area of oncology, pulmonology, cardiology, toxicology, pharmacology, addiction, or any other relevant specialty. The nine voting members also include one member who is an officer or employee of a State or local government or of the Federal Government, and one member who is a representative of the general public. Almost all non-Federal members of this committee serve as Special Government Employees. Members will be invited to serve for terms of up to 4 years.

III. Nomination Procedures

Any interested person may nominate one or more qualified individuals for membership on the advisory committee. Self-nominations are also accepted. Nominations must include a current, complete résumé or curriculum vitae for each nominee and a signed copy of the Acknowledgement and Consent form available at the FDA Advisory Nomination Portal (see ADDRESSES). Nominations must also specify the advisory committee for which the nominee is recommended. Nominations must also acknowledge that the nominee is aware of the nomination unless self-nominated. FDA will ask potential candidates to provide detailed information concerning such matters related to financial holdings, employment, and research grants and/or contracts to permit evaluation of possible sources of conflicts of interest.

This notice is issued under the Federal Advisory Committee Act (5 U.S.C. app. 2) and 21 CFR part 14, relating to advisory committees.

Dated: September 7, 2018.
Leslie Kux, Associate Commissioner for Policy.

CFP: Special Issue of Synthese on the Notion of Reliability

Guest Editors: Stefano Bonzio (UnivPM Ancona), Jürgen Landes (LMU Munich), and Barbara Osimani (UnivPM Ancona)

Current political, social and even scientific debates all hinge upon whether data, inferences and/or belief forming processes are reliable (the replication crisis and fake news are just tips of the iceberg). We are calling for philosophical/methodological contributions which help us through these difficult circumstances.

Given the variety of intertwined problems we are calling for contributions addressing the notion of reliability [broadly construed]. In particular, we are calling for contributions to

  • reliability, its uses and models in the sciences and methodologies (e.g., empirical, theoretical, social);
  • reliability in the philosophy of the sciences, including, among other approaches, formal epistemology;
  • traditional main-stream approaches to reliability;
  • reliability and the replication crisis and
  • reliable inference.

For further information, please contact the guest editors: stefano.bonzio@gmail.com, juergenlandes@yahoo.de, or barbaraosimani@gmail.com.

The deadline for submissions is 11 November 2018. Please, submit your contributions via the editorial manager online. Make sure to select this SI when selecting an article type.

Baruch S. Blumberg NASA/Library of Congress Chair in Astrobiology

The Kluge Center at the Library of Congress invites applications to the Baruch S. Blumberg NASA/Library of Congress Chair in Astrobiology.

A partnership between NASA’s Astrobiology Program and the Library of Congress, the Blumberg Chair, an annually selected position, supports a senior scholar in the sciences or the humanities to take up residence in the Library’s John W. Kluge Center and conduct research on the humanistic and societal impacts of astrobiology.

Click here for more information. Application deadline is 1 December 2018.

Dissertation Abstracts Issues 78-07 A and B

The latest batch of recent doctoral dissertations harvested from the issues 78-07 A and B of Dissertation Abstracts can be found in the links below. ProQuest has altered how they put out their individual issues. No longer do they correlate to one month, so the dating is more random. Thus titles will range from 2018—yes they have some 2018 dates—back into the 1930s for certain subject areas.

There is one additional aspect to point out about this latest batch of dissertations. ProQuest has begun adding numerous titles from many universities dating back into the 1930s. Not all of these earlier titles come with abstracts, but the entire dissertation should be available for downloading. Also you may find some duplicate titles—ProQuest now has around 30 percent duplicate titles in each issue.

JHMdiss78-07-4444

ISISdiss78-07-4444-ONLY

Pauline Yu to Step Down as ACLS President

August 27, 2018, New York, NY—The American Council of Learned Societies (ACLS) today announced that President Pauline Yu will retire on 30 June 2019 and a search for her successor has been launched.

ACLS Board Chair, Bill Kirby, expressed the Council’s profound appreciation for Pauline Yu’s 16 years of service: “Pauline is a true Scholar-Official. She has promoted scholarship at the highest level across fields and national boundaries, while reinvigorating our nation’s leading organization in support of the humanities. During Pauline’s tenure, ACLS more than doubled the number of research fellowships it awards, tripled the dollar value of awards to scholars, and increased its endowment by 110 percent. Under Pauline’s leadership, ACLS initiated programs that reach scholars around the world and across the realms of academic disciplines, deepened the public’s engagement with scholarship, and established directions for its next century of service to the academy and society. She has presented to audiences at home and abroad on the dynamism of the humanities in addressing contemporary issues. “We on the ACLS Board are deeply grateful for her leadership, and we thank her above all on behalf of the constellation of scholars, teachers, and (not the least) students who have benefited from her passion to champion and support innovation and scholarship in the humanities.”

Pauline Yu became president of the American Council of Learned Societies in July 2003, having served as dean of humanities in the College of Letters and Science at the University of California, Los Angeles and professor of East Asian languages and cultures from 1994-2003. Prior to that appointment, she was founding chair of the Department of East Asian Languages and Literatures at the University of California, Irvine (1989-94) and on the faculty of Columbia University (1985-89) and the University of Minnesota (1976-85). She received her BA in history and literature from Harvard University and her MA and PhD in comparative literature from Stanford University. She is the author or editor of five books and dozens of articles on classical Chinese poetry, literary theory, comparative poetics, and issues in the humanities and has received fellowships from the Guggenheim Foundation, the American Council of Learned Societies, and the National Endowment for the Humanities. She was awarded the Modern Language Association’s William Riley Parker Prize for best PMLA article of 2007.

Yu is a fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences and member of the American Philosophical Society and The Committee of 100. She serves on the Board of Directors of the Chiang Ching-kuo Foundation for International Scholarly Exchange, The Robert H. N. Ho Family Foundation, the Henry Luce Foundation, and The Teagle Foundation. In addition, she is a trustee of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, the American Academy in Berlin, and the National Humanities Center. Yu also served on the Harvard University Board of Overseers and the Scholars Council of the Library of Congress’s Kluge Center. Yu holds five honorary degrees and is a senior research scholar at Columbia University.

ACLS has engaged the search firm of Storbeck Pimental & Associates to aid in finding ACLS’s next president. For more information or to nominate candidates, please see the notice on the ACLS website under Employment Opportunities.

UCSF Archives & Special Collections Awarded $99,325 LSTA Grant for Textual Data Extraction from Historical Materials on HIV/AIDS

The Archives and Special Collections department of the University of California, San Francisco (UCSF) Library is pleased to announce the award of a $99,325 “Pitch-An-Idea, Local” grant for the first year of a two-year project from the Institute of Museum and Library Services’ (IMLS) Library Services and Technology Act funding administered through the California State Library. The Archives will take the nearly 200,000 pages of textual HIV/AIDS historical materials which have been digitized as part of various digitization projects—including the National Historic Publications and Records Commission (NHPRC)-funded project, “Evolution of San Francisco’s Response to a Public Health Crisis;” and the National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH)-funded project, “The San Francisco Bay Area’s Response to the AIDS Epidemic”—and will extract unstructured, textual data from these materials using Optical Character Recognition (OCR) and related software. The project team will prepare the text as a research-ready, unstructured textual dataset to be used for digital humanities, computationally driven cultural heritage, and machine learning research inquiries into the history of the HIV/AIDS epidemic.

The 24-month project, entitled “No More Silence—Opening the Data of the HIV/AIDS Epidemic” has commenced as of 1 July 2018. The digitized materials from which text will be extracted include handwritten correspondence, notebooks, typed reports, and agency records which represent a broad view of the lived experience of the epidemic, including documentation from People with AIDS and their friends, families, and scientists and public health officials working to slow the epidemic. All historical materials represented in this dataset have been previously screened to address privacy concerns. The resulting unstructured, textual dataset will be deposited in the UC Dash datasharing repository for public access and use by any interested parties, and will also be deposited in other similar data repositories as appropriate. “During my tenure at UCSF,” says health sciences historian and professor in the Department of Anthropology, History, and Social Medicine at UCSF, Dr. Aimee Medeiros, “I have been inspired by the library’s enthusiasm and dedication to public access and the use of practices in the digital humanities to help maximize access to HIV/AIDS material.” This project will build on that legacy by bringing these valuable historical materials into the realm of digital humanities and scientific research and making them computationally actionable.

Please find a full summary of the project on our blog. We are always interested in hearing from colleagues involved in similar work. For inquiries, contact University Archivist Polina Ilieva or Digital Archivist Charlie Macquarie.

UVA Landscape Studies Platform: A Call for Contemporary Bibliographies and Reading Lists for Teaching Landscape History

The Project:

The Landscape Studies Initiative (LSI), led by Beth Meyer and Michael Lee at University of Virginia, is developing an open, public platform for the trans-disciplinary teaching of landscape history. The Mellon Foundation-funded LSI takes Elizabeth Barlow Rogers’ Landscape Design: A Cultural and Architectural History (Abrams 2002) as an underlying armature and embraces the digital connection of fieldwork, period documents, and enlarged secondary sources. As a teaching tool, the Landscape Studies platform will enable students’ discovery of novel trajectories, voices, and perspectives, as manifest in the creation, maintenance, and lived experience of cultural landscapes.

The Call:

At this early stage in a multi-year project, we seek future collaborators and partners. In particular, we invite contributors to submit reading lists and topical bibliographies that will expand and update the references of Landscape Design. We welcome reading lists from curses taught in a variety of disciplines—including cultural geography, STS, cultural landscape studies, environmental history, and design history—to assist the Initiative in expanding secondary sources and incorporating recent approaches. This includes books and articles that investigate landscape in light of the cultural and spatial turn, critical visual and media studies, post-colonial and post-structural readings, and the enlarged socio-material intensities and anthropocene networks theorized in political ecology and the history of science.

For initial platform testing, the LSI team is developing pilot courses focused on landscapes and modernization across the long 18th and 19th centuries, examining the feedback between design and shifting cultural habits, socio-technical systems, and territorial frameworks. This includes considering processes of professionalization, industrialization, urbanization, agricultural rationalization, and imperial expansion, as well as the rise of capitalist (labor) markets and nation-states, with their broad bureaucratic and civic institutions. Reading lists that focus on this period are welcome; we especially encourage submission of bibliographies that develop a critical and reflective relationship between contemporary crises and their longer genealogical manifestation in designed and managed landscapes.

All contributors will be credited on the LSI Platform, with their entries including contributing researcher/educator and past course context (aside subject and landscape-specific tags). Students will be able to search the platform’s resources through these curated and topical clusters as well as collate their own, inquiry-driven materials.

Submission Details:

Instructions for Contributors:

Reading list submissions will be accepted on an on-going basis. Contributors interested in submitting are encouraged to send an email to the LSI Box account: Syllabi.kayhs0y2fy3hqxmy@u.box.com. Please note your topical/period focus in your email title, formatted as follows: ‘Landscape Studies Bibliographic Updates: [your topical focus].

Attached to the email, please include your contact information and a short abstract (150 words max.) saved as a word doc. In the abstract, please describe the focus of the reading list, the initial context of use (research, undergraduate or graduate teaching, etc.), and key methods or approaches exemplified in the texts. All reading lists should be attached as a second, separate document, formatted (preferably) as a Zotero export or a doc/pdf bibliography with Chicago-style entries. See formatting notes below for more information.

Confirmation of receipt and incorporation (or redundancy) will be provided within six weeks. At that point, contributors will be asked to confirm their role in collecting the initial materials and their agreement to open posting, with citation of their curating role; availability of internally linked materials—article copies or book pdfs—will be subject to copyright restrictions.

Contributors will also be sent links to the Landscape Studies’ aggregated, digital bibliography and incorporated in a mailing list, for announcements on platform progress, launch dates, beta testing and course development opportunities.

Preferred digital format for reading lists and bibliographies:

Zotero collections, with notes and without files, exported as ‘Zotero RDF’. Annotations to reading lists can be submitted as notes on applicable records.

Secondary format (it is strongly encouraged to use preferred format):

Word documents (DOC or DOCX) or Adobe acrobat files (PDF) with Chicago-style bibliography entries.

Addresses for submissions:

LSI Box: Syllabi.kayhs0y2fy3hqxmy@u.box.com

More general info and contacts for the project can be found here: Landscape Studies Initiative.

NEH Announces $43.1 Million for 218 Humanities Projects Nationwide

Grant awards support cultural infrastructure, humanities research, exhibitions, documentaries, education programs for teachers, and the preservation of historic collections.

WASHINGTON, D.C. (8 August 2018) — The National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH) today announced $43.1 million in awards for 218 humanities projects across the country. The grants include the first awards made under NEH’s new Infrastructure and Capacity-Building Challenge Grant program, which will support infrastructure projects at 29 U.S. cultural institutions in 20 states and the District of Columbia.

This round of funding, NEH’s third and last for fiscal year 2018, will support vital research, education, preservation, and public programs in the humanities. These peer-reviewed grants were awarded in addition to $47 million in annual operating support provided to the national network of state and local humanities councils during fiscal year 2018.

“From nationally broadcast documentaries to summer workshops for high school teachers, the projects receiving funding today strengthen and sustain the cultural life of our nation and its citizens,” said NEH Chairman Jon Parrish Peede.

Infrastructure grants include funding to construct a new arts and culture hub in downtown Juneau, Alaska, and to provide conservation services and training for staff of libraries at Historically Black Colleges and Universities to strengthen stewardship of special collections documenting the African-American experience.

In addition to providing for construction and capacity-building projects at museums, libraries, and colleges, NEH grants support a wide range of public programs that bring humanities ideas, experiences, and resources to communities large and small. Grants include funding for the reinstallation of a permanent gallery of early American art at the Philadelphia Museum of Art, as well as support for feature-length documentaries on the life and civil rights legacy of singer Marian Anderson and on the literary career and cultural impact of Laura Ingalls Wilder.

Other grants announced today advance scholarship and discovery in the fields of history, literature, linguistics, art history, and comparative religion. Archaeological excavation of an abandoned settlement in Western Anatolia will answer important questions about the transition from Greek to Roman rule in the ancient world. A project to develop software to identify and analyze archival materials in multiple indigenous languages will enable Native American communities such as the Miami Tribe of Oklahoma to revitalize languages close to extinction.

NEH Public Scholar grants, which support popular nonfiction books in the humanities, will enable publication of: a comprehensive biography of Teddy Roosevelt by Pulitzer Prize-winning author T. J. Stiles; a history of a clandestine Nazi resistance group that attempted to dismantle the Third Reich from within; and a book on a 1939 Picasso exhibition at the MoMA as a turning point in American culture. Grants for scholarly editions and translations of significant humanities texts include continued NEH-supported work on the papers of Andrew Jackson, a documentary history of the adoption of the Bill of Rights, and a digital edition of the complete correspondence of Willa Cather.

Several projects receiving grant awards will help preserve archival collections of historical and cultural importance. These include history of science collections at the American Institute of Physics’ Niels Bohr Library and Archives, objects and art documenting the life of Emily Dickinson at The Evergreens historic house museum, and records from the Adirondack Historical Association of the region’s Native American history, settlement, and development of local logging, mining, and tourism industries.

Forty-five institutions received grants to support professional development for K-12 and college teachers through summer workshops and institutes on humanities topics such as: the Great Sioux War and the Battle of Little Bighorn; American women’s experience of the Revolutionary War and Civil War; and the history of the transcontinental railroad.

A full list of grants by geographic location is available here.
…………
National Endowment for the Humanities: Created in 1965 as an independent federal agency, the National Endowment for the Humanities supports research and learning in history, literature, philosophy, and other areas of the humanities by funding selected, peer-reviewed proposals from around the nation. Additional information about the National Endowment for the Humanities and its grant programs is available at: www.neh.gov.

Thomas Radford Medical Illustration Collection

The John Rylands Library in Manchester recently posted a blog about the completion of a project to catalog its medical archives. A final blog post about the collection describes the medical illustrations of the early 19th century obstetrician Thomas Radford.

The Eugenics Crusade on PBS

by Dan Kevles

Mark your calendars to tune into PBS on Tuesday, 16 October 2018, 9 to 11 p.m., EST, to see the premiere of “The Eugenics Crusade,” a riveting program in the American Experience series, written and directed by Michelle Ferrari whose credits include much-admired documentaries on Rachel Carson, Margaret Sanger, and—an Emmy winner—Seabiscuit. I had the pleasure of working with Michelle as a consultant on the project and to offer on-camera commentary on its subject in the company of Adam Cohen, Nathaniel Comfort, Wendy Kline, Thomas C. Leonard, Paul Lombardo, Siddhartha Mukherjee, Alondra Nelson, Christine Rosen, Jonathan Spiro, Alexandra Minna Stern, and Keith Wailoo.

Help Graduate Students Attend the Annual AHA Meeting

The AHA is committed to making the 2019 annual meeting in Chicago (January 3-6) both informative and affordable for graduate students at all stages. The members of the AHA Council have pledged to match all donations to the Annual Meeting Travel Fund up to $7,000. Please donate today. All contributions received by November 1 will be counted toward the matching challenge. Registration for the conference is now open.

2018 AHA Election Results

AHA members elected Mary Lindemann (University of Miami) as the next president-elect in the 2018 balloting for officers and committee members of the American Historical Association. Visit Perspectives Daily to see the full list of historians who will begin serving in January 2019.

Latest Issue of the International Society for the History of Medicine (ISHM) Newsletter Now Available

Besides news about members and affiliated societies; lists of recent publications, forthcoming conferences, and calls for papers; you will also find updates and the program of the 46th ISHM Congress, which took place on 3-7 September 2018 in Lisbon. You will find the current, as well as past issues of the Newsletter, here.

Emanuela Appetiti, Editor

New Book Series: Activist Studies of Science and Technology

Activist Studies of Science and Technology

This series, from University of Massachusetts Press, will publish accessible, engaging books on science and technology in support of movements for justice and sustainability around the world. We seek submissions by scholars from a wide range of disciplines internationally and are especially interested in publishing:

  • Historical and social science research on social and political activism in science, technology, and/or medicine and on the impact of new technologies on activism
  • Critical histories of science, technology, or medicine that aid in understanding issues of current political relevance
  • Applications of STS (science and technology studies) theory to support social movements and/or to reconstruct technoscience along activist lines
  • Critical studies in the political economy of science, technology, and/or medicine
  • Biographies, oral histories, and memoirs of activist scientists

Series Editor

Sigrid Schmalzer
History
University of Massachusetts Amherst
sigrid@history.umass.edu

Manuscript Submissions

Please direct manuscript inquiries to the series editor or to:

Matt Becker, Executive Editor
University of Massachusetts Press
East Experiment Station
671 North Pleasant Street
Amherst, MA 01003
mbecker@umpress.umass.edu
413-545-4989

Editorial Advisory Board

  • Michaelann Bewsee, Community Organizing, Arise for Social Justice Springfield
  • Sarah Bridger, History, Cal Poly San Luis Obispo
  • Hsin-hsing Chen, Social Transformation Studies, Shih-Hsin University
  • Giovanna Di Chiro, Environmental Studies, Swarthmore
  • Chris Dols, Publisher, Science for the People
  • Ron Eglash, Science and Technology Studies, Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute
  • Steven Epstein, Sociology, Northwestern University
  • Alan Goodman, Anthropology, Hampshire College
  • Evelynn Hammonds, History of Science, Harvard University
  • David Hess, Sociology, Vanderbilt University
  • Susan Lindee, History and Sociology of Science, University of Pennsylvania
  • Brian Martin, Humanities and Social Inquiry, University of Wollongong
  • Clapperton Mavhunga, STS, MIT
  • Philip Mirowski, Economics and Policy Studies and History and Philosophy of Science, University of Notre Dame
  • Kelly Moore, Sociology, Loyola University
  • Naomi Oreskes, History of Science, Harvard University
  • Robert Proctor, History, Stanford University
  • Hilary Rose, Sociology, University of Bradford
  • Steven Rose, Biology, Open University
  • Banu Subramaniam, Women, Gender, Sexuality Studies, UMass Amherst
  • Abha Sur, STS, MIT
  • Alexis Takahashi, Activism, Free Rads (www.freerads.org)

AAAS’ Next Steps After SCOTUS Travel Ban Warning

*Read the full article here.

By Mark Athitakis | 9 July 2018

Following the Supreme Court’s decision to uphold the White House’s travel ban, the American Association for the Advancement of Science is focused on collaboration and data-gathering.

On June 26, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled that the White House’s ban on travel from seven predominantly Muslim countries was constitutional. The decision was a blow for the American Association for the Advancement of Science, which had vocally opposed the multiple versions of the ban that President Trump has supported.

“We are disappointed that the Supreme Court has decided to uphold the Trump administration’s travel ban,” said AAAS CEO Rush Holt in a statement in response to last week’s ruling [PDF]. “Recent White House statements and visa policies are discouraging many of the best and brightest international students, scholars, and scientists from choosing the United States to study and work. Scientific progress depends on openness, transparency, and the free flow of ideas; these principles have helped the United States to attract and richly benefit from international scientific talent.”

Since the Trump administration began its efforts to implement a travel ban in early 2017, AAAS had taken the lead in arguing how the travel ban would stifle that flow of scientific ideas. Last fall, it delivered a letter to the White House that was signed by more than 180 fellow scientific associations. And, anecdotally, the travel ban has stifled travel among international scientists: Last year, for instance, the Washington Post reported that a Sudanese electrical engineer would not be able to accept an award at an AAAS conference as the ban made its way through the courts.

With the travel ban now ratified as constitutional, the organization’s new goal is to better quantify the ban’s impact on the scientific community, according to AAAS Director of Government Relations Joanne Padrón Carney.

“The first step is gathering the data,” Carney said. “We are a science organization, after all.”

Conference attendance is one metric that AAAS will look at. Another is the number of student visas for foreign students looking to attend American universities—a number that’s declining, according to a recent report in Nature.

“Will we see further boycotts of conferences being held here in the United States, or just boycotts of individuals choosing not to come to the United States to attend a conference? We’ll monitor that,” Carney said. “We will continue to monitor and gather data on the impacts in terms of applications and admissions at U.S. universities. And then, with that information, we’ll look at our options. Are we able to develop a set of concrete recommendations that we may be able to present to the Department of State or Department of Homeland Security?”

In the meantime, Carney said AAAS intends to keep collaborating with other associations to speak out collectively as the need arises. “We will continue to work with the broader scientific and engineering community and speak with one voice to the extent possible,” she said. “They are very eager to continue to be engaged on this matter. They are not walking away from this.”

Every Historian Counts: A New AHA Database Analyzes Careers for PhDs

*Read the full article here.

By Emily Swafford and Dylan Ruediger | 9 July 2018

Worries about employment opportunities for history PhDs are not new. Much ink has been spilled, often in the AHA’s own publications, bemoaning declining career prospects (read: tenure-track jobs) for history PhDs and auguring ill for the discipline. Moreover, it’s long been clear to the AHA that addressing the concerns of new and recent PhDs is imperative for all of us, not just professionally but ethically. After years of graduate study, often accompanied by opportunity and financial costs, new PhDs should not feel they must choose between the values that brought them to doctoral programs and reasonable compensation.
As historians, we know that context matters and that transparency in evidence lends nuance to any conversation. And often transparency requires data, publicly accessible and clearly presented. Until relatively recently, many graduate programs declined to track where their alumni ended up. Those that did often counted only those who secured academic employment, compounding the invisibility of careers outside the professoriate and reinforcing the idea that PhDs who did not become professors were failures. Though this perception is changing, it persists in our community, not only among students but among faculty, who are responsible for making sure they earn their degrees in the first place. Keeping track only of those graduates “placed” into academic careers is akin to saying the others don’t count.

This is where the AHA is poised to help. We don’t control the number of academic jobs posted or the number of PhDs awarded. But we do believe that every person with a history PhD counts, no matter what career path they follow.

Today, we’re releasing the final version of Where Historians Work, an interactive database that shows current employment data for all history PhDs earned in 2004-13—more than 8,500 of them—from every PhD-granting program in the United States. Where Historians Work allows users to see broad trends in PhD employment and to assess how such factors as gender, field of study, and degree-granting institution influence career outcomes. This tool helps answer long-standing questions about the discipline and, we hope, will prompt new conversations about where historical work happens, what it means to “do” history, and ultimately what it means to be a historian.

Where Historians Work is now the fullest picture of PhD careers in any discipline and attests to the wide variety of careers historians settle in to—on and off the tenure track, within and beyond the professoriate. The database’s interactive features allow users to talk about both the wide “diaspora” of historians and the minute patterns that shape individual stories. We hope to hear about users’ discoveries, but we also want to share a few of our own findings.

When You Earned Your Degree Is Important

It’s well known that the onset of the Great Recession in 2008 was disastrous for the academic job market, but its full effects on the career paths of history PhDs have been unclear. The 10-year cohort represented in Where Historians Work is split evenly by the Great Recession, which we can now see significantly changed the landscape of academic employment. Before and after the recession, roughly the same percentage of PhDs found work as faculty, but the academic jobs for those who graduated after 2008 were more likely to be off the tenure track. In 2017, when we gathered our data, about 55 percent of the 2004–08 cohort were working on the tenure track (at both 4-year and 2-year schools), and about 12 percent were in non-tenure-track jobs. But for those earning their degrees in 2009–13, about 46 percent were working on the tenure track, while about 20 percent were in non-tenure-track jobs. This long-term trend highlights the importance of advocating for stable, well-compensated employment for non-tenure-track historians in addition to pushing for the creation of tenure-track lines.

But So Is Your Program

Where Historians Work allows users to select single or multiple departments to compare the broad employment outcomes of programs’ graduates over time. It is no revelation that graduates of certain institutions stand a greater chance of finding tenure-track positions, particularly at research universities, but employment rates across sectors vary by department, too. These findings confirm previous research from the AHA (in The Many Careers of History PhDs) and additional studies. But Where Historians Work also lets users explore the career paths of graduates of particular PhD programs. This level of detail is granular enough to let students and faculty in specific departments define success by metrics appropriate to a program’s purpose and goals, but it also creates a holistic picture of what history PhDs actually do. These data encourage transparency in our discipline on many scales: among departments, within departments, even between students and advisers.

Women Have Achieved Parity—In Numbers

The data in Where Historians Work show that gender has surprisingly little impact on broad patterns of career outcomes for historians with PhDs. Anecdotal evidence has long posited that women are more likely to be shunted out of the professoriate or into non-tenure-track positions, but Where Historians Work suggests otherwise. In the entire data set, PhDs were employed beyond the professoriate at a rate of 23.4 percent, on the tenure track at 50.8 percent, and in non-tenure-track positions at 16.2 percent. For women, those rates were 24.4 percent, 50.6 percent, and 15.3 percent, respectively. For men, the rates were 22.7 percent, 50.9 percent, and 16.8 percent. Additionally, gender seems to make a negligible impact on employment outside the professoriate. Employment rates in the nonprofit, government, private, and higher education administrative sectors show almost no variation by gender.

This does not mean that gender plays no role in the professional experiences of women. Such issues as compensation, tenure decisions, sexual harassment, parental leave policies, and more subtle forms of discrimination held back women historians for years before #MeToo and certainly will continue to do so as long as the status quo holds. But across sectors in our data set, men and women secured their positions at approximately the same rates. Parity may yet lead to equity.

Field Specialization Matters

As the AHA encourages PhDs to consider a broad range of careers, we often hear that there are fewer options beyond the academy for historians who don’t specialize in the United States (or a few other fields). Superficially, the data seem to indicate that there are many more jobs beyond the professoriate for Americanists: 28 percent of US historians (and 26 percent of historians of science) work outside the academy, compared to just 10 percent of historians of the Middle East or Asia, and 13 percent of Africanists. These numbers, however, are closely tied to how many tenure-track jobs are available in different fields: approximately 7 in 10 historians specializing in the Middle East, Asia, or Africa are employed in tenure-track positions at 4-year institutions, compared to only 4 in 10 US historians. This suggests that field of study made a difference in tenure-track prospects in 2004–13 and that far fewer historians in these fields decided to pursue other opportunities.

Faculty Jobs Vary

Job candidates are supposed to tailor cover letters to fit an institution, not just because institutions differ but because the jobs do, too. In like fashion, Where Historians Work emphasizes that jobs within the professoriate are highly varied. Like all the other jobs cataloged in Where Historians Work, the graduates of different programs find jobs teaching at different rates.

Despite ongoing erosions in academic hiring, two-thirds of history PhDs become faculty at postsecondary institutions. Yet less than 20 percent of them work on the tenure track at R1 universities, the job most have been prepared to do—and to want. Where Historians Work, however, shows that most faculty work at institutions that have teaching, not research, as their core mission. If one purpose of history PhD programs is to prepare future generations of faculty, our data suggests that learning to teach ought to be an essential component of graduate education; learning to think of oneself as being a teacher is important as well.

PhDs Have Agency, Too

Where Historians Work documents outcomes but nevertheless raises important questions about the motivations of the 8,515 individuals who compose the data set. One of the best ways to see this is through the geographical dispersion of history PhDs. Nationally, history PhDs are distributed in roughly the same way as the rest of the population. Yet graduates of many programs remain clustered in the cities or regions where they earned their degree, while other programs’ graduates seem to scatter. Where Historians Work cannot tell us why this is so, but it suggests that students make decisions about which doctoral programs to attend and which job markets to enter based on factors that may include regional or family ties. Geographical data may also indicate that today’s PhDs are not necessarily heeding the “be ready to move anywhere” dictum and are instead making decisions based at least in part on where they want to live.

Conclusions

Where Historians Work tells many stories. In addition to the clear decline of tenure-track job lines, it provides evidence that there are, in fact, many doors open to historians. These stories are familiar ones, but we can now see them in the context of national data and in relation to the smaller-scale stories that programs, people, and professions have to tell.

Seeking quantitative data on the career landscape of history PhDs signals a commitment to the importance of rigorous historical thinking. The AHA is dedicated to the promotion of history and historical thinking in all areas of life, including the discipline in all its forms and historians in all their variety. Now that we can enumerate a fuller array of outcomes, we should be able to ask better questions about how all PhDs are prepared for the work they will do.

…………

Emily Swafford is director of academic and professional affairs at the AHA. Dylan Ruediger is the AHA’s coordinator, Career Diversity for Historians and institutional research.

Father of Modern Oceanography Honored by UNESCO’s Intergovernmental Oceanographic Commission

UNESCO Media Advisory No. 2018-28

Paris, 28 June — Walter Munk, a giant of modern oceanography, delivered the Roger Revelle Memorial Lecture during the Executive Council of UNESCO’s Intergovernmental Oceanographic Commission (IOC) at UNESCO’s Headquarters on 5 July.

In his lecture, the 100-year-old scientist, described by the New York Times as “the Einstein of Oceanography,” shared his unique perspective on the evolution of oceanography over the past eight decades.

“It is an honour for UNESCO to receive Professor Munk and benefit from his insights into the great progress of oceanography and how much further it can go in contributing to the safeguarding of our shared ocean and the construction of a more sustainable world,” said Audrey Azoulay, the Director-General of UNESCO. The IOC Executive Council will present Walter Munk with the UNESCO Roger Revelle Medal, which, like the memorial lecture itself, is named after Roger Revelle (USA, 1909-1991), a pioneering researcher into, among other subjects, anthropogenic global warming.

Born in Austria in 1917, Walter Munk, has been a physical oceanographer and geophysicist with the Scripps Institution of Oceanography (USA) since 1939. Over a long life of scientific inquiry, Munk has made decisive contributions to our understanding of ocean currents, tides and deep-ocean mixing, tsunamis and seismic waves, as well as the rotation of the Earth.

At Scripps, he was among the founders of the Institute of Geophysics in 1962 and in 2015 he cofounded the Scripps Center for Marine Archaeology with Damien Leloup.

Each year, the IOC’s Executive Council reviews the Intergovernmental Commission’s work and prepares the General Assembly of the IOC’s 149 Member States. This year, the Council will notably focus on preparations for the UN Decade of Ocean Science for Sustainable Development (2021-2030).

2018 BSHS Pickstone Prize

The British Society for the History of Science (BSHS) Pickstone Prize celebrates the best scholarly work in the history of science and medicine in English. The BSHS is delighted to announce the 2018 winner is Michael Wintroub, The Voyage of Thought: Navigating Knowledge across the Sixteenth-Century World (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2017). The book takes its readers on a French mission to carve out an empire in the Indies and conducts them through the oceans of 16th-century thought.

The second prize has been jointly awarded to Paola Bertucci for Artisanal Enlightenment: Science and the Mechanical Arts in Old Regime France (New Haven: Yale University Press, 2018) and Rohan Deb Roy for Malarial Subjects: Empire, Medicine and Nonhumans in British India, 1820–1909 (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2017).

These books were chosen from among five shortlisted books, which represent exciting new advances in understanding and interpreting science’s past. They are:

Bertucci’s Artisanal Enlightenment, which reconsiders the role of learned artisans, placing them at the heart of the French Enlightenment.

Surekha Davies, Renaissance Ethnography and the Invention of Humans: New Worlds, Maps and Monsters (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2016). Reveals how cannibalism was cooked up by Europeans as a way of defining the ‘strangeness’ of people in Brazil.

Deb Roy’s Malarial Subjects, which ambitiously interweaves the histories of malaria and cinchona (used for quinine) to show how knowledge and practices became ‘global.’

Jutta Schickore, About Method: Experimenters, Snake Venom, and the History of Writing Scientifically (Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 2017). Uncovers the weird and wonderful experiments conducted to understand the power and action of snake venom.

The BSHS Pickstone Prize is awarded every two years, and reflects the Society’s mission to promote excellence in the history of science, technology, and medicine. The prize was established to honor the late historian of science Professor John Pickstone (1944-2014).

The judging panel for the 2018 Pickstone Prize was chaired by Dr. Tim Boon (Head of Research and Public History, Science Museum). It included Dr. Patricia Fara (University of Cambridge), Professor Charlotte Sleigh (University of Kent and Editor of the British Journal for the History of Science) and Dr. Elizabeth Haines (University of Bristol).

The value of the Pickstone Prize is £300. The winner will be asked to give a presentation, sponsored by the BSHS, on the subject of their book.

The longlist can be read here.

Prof. Michael Mizell Remembered in Lecture Series

Garland E. Allen delivered the Second Annual Michael Mizell Memorial Public History Lecture on May 18 at the Marine Biological Laboratory (MBL) in Woods Hole, MA. The topic was “Strange Bedfellows? Eugenics and the Environmental Conservation Movements in Early Twentieth Century America.” Michael Mizell was an Associate Professor of History at the University of New Orleans who, as a public historian, sought to document and display histories of the lives of everyday people. Among other projects, he developed a website presenting the reaction of many New Orleans residents to the effects of Hurricane Katrina. At the time of his premature death from cancer, he was starting to work with the MBL History Project documenting the public controversy over development of a leper colony on Penikese Island, off the coast of Woods Hole. Penikese had been the site of Louis Agassiz’s Anderson School of Biology in 1871-1873, an ambitious program to introduce high school biology teachers to direct experience with marine organisms and habitats. Cut short by Agassiz’s death in 1872, the facility was eventually transformed into a Leper Colony. In the meantime, however, biologists such as Charles Otis Whitman from the University of Chicago, who had attended the Anderson School, recognized Woods Hole as an outstanding location for collecting and studying a wide variety of marine flora and fauna. It was this experience that brought Whitman to found the Marine Biological Laboratory in Woods Hole in 1888. Michael Mizell is the son of MBL research scientist Merle Mizell and spent the summers growing up in Woods Hole; thus the lecture series commemorates Michael’s special connection to the Laboratory and the larger Woods Hole community.

DHST Young Scholar Prize

The International Union of the History and Philosophy of Science and Technology, Division of History of Science and Technology (IUHPST/DHST) invites submissions for the DHST Prize for Young Scholars, to be presented in 2021. Initiated at the 22nd International Congress of History of Science in 2005 held in Beijing, the DHST Young Scholar Prize is now awarded by the IUHPST/DHST every two years.

Up to three awards for recent PhD historians of science and technology will be awarded to recognize outstanding doctoral dissertations completed and filed between 1 September 2016 and 1 September 2018. See: http://dhstweb.org/awards/youngscholarsprize