History of Ocean Science, Technology and Medicine

Historians of science have recently begun to examine role of the oceans themselves in human activity, not just as a pathway between places that matter, but as a place with a history of its own, with which humans have always interacted. In turning their gaze to the other two thirds of the earth's surface, scholars thus acknowledge the oceans as a changeable and changing place, affecting and affected by human activities. This "oceanic turn" is playing out in the humanities broadly, as scholars in many disciplines explore the role of the oceans in human endeavors including labor, culture, politics, industry, law, or literature. Spanning many different periods and regions around the world, this group will examine broad conceptions of oceans across history.
 

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Consortium Respectful Behavior Policy

Participants at Consortium activities will treat each other with respect and consideration to create a collegial, inclusive, and professional environment that is free from any form of discrimination, harassment, or retaliation.

Participants will avoid any inappropriate actions or statements based on individual characteristics such as age, race, religion, ethnicity, sexual orientation, gender identity, gender expression, marital status, nationality, political affiliation, ability status, educational background, or any other characteristic protected by law. Disruptive or harassing behavior of any kind will not be tolerated. Harassment includes but is not limited to inappropriate or intimidating behavior and language, unwelcome jokes or comments, unwanted touching or attention, offensive images, photography without permission, and stalking.

Participants may send reports or concerns about violations of this policy to conduct@chstm.org.

Upcoming Meetings


Past Meetings

  • July 19, 2022

    "Oceans in Museums"
    Join us as a panel of museum professionals share their favorite objects and collections, discuss the challenges of curating ocean exhibits, and share resources for researchers. 
    Featuring:
    Dr. Erika Jones, curator of navigation and oceanography, (UK) National Maritime Museum
    Dr. Katrin Kleemann, postdoctoral researcher, Deutsches Schifffahrts Museum
    Dr. Kevin Sheehan, collections manager,  Maritime Museum of San Diego


  • June 21, 2022

    "Teaching Ocean History"
    Join us as a panel of historians discuss their experiences teaching the history of oceans to students in various academic contexts. We will also precirculate their syllabi for discussion.
    Helen Rozwadowski (University of Connecticut, Avery Point)
    Samantha Muka (Stevens Institute of Technology)
    Jonathan Galka (Harvard University) 
    Jack Bouchard (Rutgers University)
     


  • May 17, 2022

    Jakobina K. Arch, Whitman College, "Mitigating Risk: Cultural and Economic Adaptations to Oceanic Dangers in Tokugawa Japan."


  • April 19, 2022

    Katherine Sinclair, Rutgers University, " 'A Magnificent Natural Zoo': Domesticating the French Kerguelen Islands."


  • March 15, 2022

    Alison Glassie, Mahindra Humanities Center, Harvard University, "Ninety Perfect Sealskins: Toni Morrison’s Counter-history of Sealing."


  • February 15, 2022

    Beatriz Martínez-Rius, Sorbonne Université, "International science, salt domes, and oil: deep-sea drilling in the Mediterranean."


  • January 18, 2022

    Magdalena Grüner, Universität Hamburg, "Else Bostelmann’s Abyssal Visions and the Ocean-Surreal"


  • November 16, 2021

    Emily Hutcheson, University of Wisconsin-Madison, "Seeing Ecologies of the Deep and Shallow Seas: Local Labor and Knowledge in the Malay Archipelago, 1899-1900"


  • October 19, 2021

    Judy Johns Schloegel, Independent Scholar, "Instituting Biology in the Great Lakes: Scientific Survey Work and Inland Seas Maritime Culture, 1893-1903."


  • September 21, 2021

    Penelope K. Hardy, University of Wisconsin-La Crosse, seeks your input on her new project: a four-volume edited primary source collection tentatively titled Knowing the Oceans, 1790-1914: A Global Documentary History.


Group Conveners

  • pkhardy's picture

    Penelope Hardy

    Penelope K. Hardy is a historian of science, technology, and medicine and an assistant professor at the University of Wisconsin-La Crosse.  She studies the historical intersection of technology and the ocean sciences.  Her current book project examines a series of nineteenth- and twentieth-century ocean-going research vessels and the cultures and practices surrounding their use.  She is also editing a four-volume primary source collection, tenatively titled Knowing the Oceans, 1790-1914: A Global Documentary History, for Routledge Historical Resources.

     

  • dmcahey's picture

    Daniella McCahey

    Daniella McCahey is an Assistant Professor at Texas Tech University, where she primarily teaches on British history and the history of science. She studies the relationship between science and the environment in Polar Regions, especially islands, coasts, and ice shelves. She is the co-author of Antarctica: A History in 100 Objects (Bloomsbury 2022). Her book project, Laboratories at the Bottom of the World, addresses the history of British and New Zealand science in Antarctica during the International Geophysical Year. 

     

  • Katharina's picture

    Katharina Steiner

    Katharina Steiner received her Ph.D. in History from the University of Zurich. She currently holds a Marie Skłodowska-Curie Fellowship as a cooperation between the University of Geneva and the University of Wisconsin, Madison. Her research focuses on the intersection of visual culture and knowledge production. Her book project, Visualizing Marine Biology: Fishermen, Copepods and the Naples Zoological Station, uses the Naples Zoological Station as a case study to show how social organization and work culture shape research programs and scientific products, and vice versa. Her new research project “Depicting Species” investigates the functions and meanings ofscientific imagery and how they changed over time, genres of publication, and audiences.

     

169 Members