mardi 22 janvier 2019

Médecine, science et foyer dans l'Angleterre moderne

Recipes and Everyday Knowledge: Medicine, Science, and the Household in Early Modern England
Elaine Leong

Hardcover: 288 pages
Publisher: University of Chicago Press; First edition (November 28, 2018)
Language: English
ISBN-13: 978-0226583495 

Across early modern Europe, men and women from all ranks gathered medical, culinary, and food preservation recipes from family and friends, experts and practitioners, and a wide array of printed materials. Recipes were tested, assessed, and modified by teams of householders, including masters and servants, husbands and wives, mothers and daughters, and fathers and sons. This much-sought know-how was written into notebooks of various shapes and sizes forming “treasuries for health,” each personalized to suit the whims and needs of individual communities.

In Recipes and Everyday Knowledge, Elaine Leong situates recipe knowledge and practices among larger questions of gender and cultural history, the history of the printed word, and the history of science, medicine, and technology. The production of recipes and recipe books, she argues, were at the heart of quotidian investigations of the natural world or “household science”. She shows how English homes acted as vibrant spaces for knowledge making and transmission, and explores how recipe trials allowed householders to gain deeper understandings of sickness and health, of the human body, and of natural and human-built processes. By recovering this story, Leong extends the parameters of natural inquiry and productively widens the cast of historical characters participating in and contributing to early modern science.

Histoire de la naissance

Born Yesterday

Call for papers

Nottingham UK 
September 5-6, 2019

Please join us in Nottingham this September for the ‘Born Yesterday’ conference, an interdisciplinary conference welcoming abstracts covering all historic and contemporary aspects of childbearing and child rearing. Held in conjunction with De Partu, History of Childbirth and Midwifery Research Group.

Topics are expected to include, but not be limited to, the following subject areas:
  • History: investigations into witchcraft; bastardy; contraception; the framing of childbirth in the hospital and the home; free-birthing; parenthood; the changing role of doctors, midwives and carers; the history of birth in local, national and international contexts
  • Medicine: insights into birth trends, the rise of obstetrics, fertility, infertility, assisted fertility, miscarriage, abnormalities, still-birth
  • Art History: the varied depiction of childbirth, parenting and reproduction across the ages
  • Literature and Anthropology: literary representations of midwives, births, babies, mothers and fathers in different socio-cultural spheres, as well as within different historical periods
  • Linguistics and Discourse Analysis: analysis of texts and discourses surrounding childbirth, maternity and midwifery
  • Social Policy: analysis of maternity services and policy and its impact on women's choice; the changing role of the midwife and obstetricians; suggestions for new ways forward; issues surrounding criminality and punishment as they relate to childbirth and maternity care
  • Sociology and Feminist Studies: social constructs of motherhood across the ages; attitudes to unlawful pregnancy, parenthood and surrogacy; debates surrounding single and same-sex parenthood; the exploration of BME and mixed race birth and parenting experiences
  • Midwifery: the role and reputation of midwives across the ages, and in different cultural spheres; analysis of regulation and professionalization; solutions to infant mortality; ideas of acceptable risk; fluctuating concepts of ‘normal’ birth; the importance of choice

We are pleased to announce the following have kindly agreed to give keynote talks:
Julia Allison, Honorary Professor of Midwifery and Vice President of the Royal College of Midwives (The University of Nottingham)
Laura King, Associate Professor of History (The University of Leeds)
Tania McIntosh, Principal Lecturer of Midwifery (The University of Brighton)

Abstract Deadline: February 28, 2019
​Conference e-mail address:

Conference URL:

The Conference Organisers:
Kim Russell (Chair), Associate Professor of Midwifery
Anna Greenwood, Associate Professor of History and Co-Director of Health Humanities
Richard J. Whitt, Assistant Professor of Linguistics
Julia Allison, Honorary Professor of Midwifery and Vice President of the Royal College of Midwives

lundi 21 janvier 2019

Le rôle des maladies et du climat dans la chute de Rome

Comment l'Empire romain s'est effondré. Le climat, les maladies et la chute de Rome

Kyle Harper

Traduit par Philippe PIGNARRE

La Découverte
Collection : Hors collection Sciences Humaines
Parution : janvier 2019
Nb de pages : 500
ISBN : 9782348037146

Comment Rome est-elle passée d’un million d’habitants à 20 000 (à peine de quoi remplir un angle du Colisée) ? Que s’est-il passé quand 350 000 habitants sur 500 000 sont morts de la peste bubonique à Constantinople ?
On ne peut plus désormais raconter l’histoire de la chute de Rome en faisant comme si l’environnement (climat, bacilles mortels) était resté stable. L’Empire tardif a été le moment d’un changement décisif : la fin de l’Optimum climatique romain qui, plus humide, avait été une bénédiction pour toute la région méditerranéenne. Les changements climatiques ont favorisé l’évolution des germes, comme Yersinia pestis, le bacille de la peste bubonique. Mais « les Romains ont été aussi les complices de la mise en place d’une écologie des maladies qui ont assuré leur perte ». Les bains publics étaient des bouillons de culture ; les égouts stagnaient sous les villes ; les greniers à blé étaient une bénédiction pour les rats ; les routes commerciales qui reliaient tout l’Empire ont permis la propagation des épidémies de la mer Caspienne au mur d’Hadrien avec une efficacité jusque-là inconnue. Le temps des pandémies était arrivé.
Face à ces catastrophes, les habitants de l’Empire ont cru la fin du monde arrivée. Les religions eschatologiques, le christianisme, puis l’islam, ont alors triomphé des religions païennes.

Vides et ambiguités dans l'histoire de la médecine

Untold and Inexpressible: Gaps and Ambiguities in the Medicine as an Epistemological Challenge

Call for papers
Date: 15-16 June 2019
Place: Johannes Gutenberg University Mainz, Institute for History, Theory and Ethics of Medicine of
the University Medical Center Mainz, Am Pulverturm 13, basement (lecture hall U1125)
Deadline: 31 January 2019
Organisation: Norbert W. Paul, Tanja Pommerening

Medical treatments aim to improve the patient’s health. From the patient’s perspective, the elimination of the suffering and the restitution of “normal” life is a crucial part of the process. Patients express this in communication with the practitioner by describing symptoms on one side and impairments affecting their lives on the other. Much of this can hardly be described in words, especially embodied experiences which do not correlate with medical findings and thus are often not deemed relevant. In this regard, the patient faces the rigid and rational diagnostical categories of the practitioner that sometimes do not at all coincide with the patient’s own categories. However, how the gap between the concepts used by the practitioner and the patient could be bridged does rarely come up for discussion. Not surprisingly, this problem is also highly relevant in the study of historical sources, textual or illustrative. Sources also communicate with us even when we use them only as research objects. They were not however transmitted for this end, and certainly one cannot pose them clarifying questions. One way to reveal the underlying concepts is by means of wide contextualization. Nowadays, a number of linguistic theories focus on the inexpressible; among them are the conceptual metaphor theory, the prototype theory, and translation theories. The untold remains however a gap. These gaps appear to have been used in the history of medicine as projection areas. The still common attempts at retrospective diagnoses provide a good example of an overly reductionist view of ambiguous and sometime even opaque medical phenomena. Historians assume that the categories and concepts coincide with the modern ones and try to fill the gaps with narratives. This is not a novel phenomenon but rather a fundamental historico-epistemological problem of the history of science. Our conference aims to explore these phenomena from a methodological perspective. We ask modern doctors how they bridge the communicative gap between their categories and those of the patients. We ask the historical disciplines how they deal with what is left untold or is inexpressible from the perspective of the sources. We are pleased to receive proposals of papers from historiographers of science studying old textbooks on medicine history and exploring the narratives used to fill the gaps in the primary sources. We expect proposals of papers on the main theme, limited to 20 minutes, as well as panels with a series of papers, lasting 90 minutes. Beside the specified theme, it is also possible to include other papers (limited to 20 minutes) from the domain of the pre-modern medicine. Please submit your proposals of papers or panels to Alexander Ilin-Tomich ( before 31 January 2019 including an abstract (c. 300 words), which clearly describes the questions and outcomes of your study.

You will find the PDF version of this call for papers under (or see the German version).

Please visit our new webpage in English or the German webpage for more information on the Ancient Medicine Interdisciplinary Working Group.

dimanche 20 janvier 2019

La mauvaise mesure des esprits

The Mismeasure of Minds. Debating Race and Intelligence between Brown and The Bell Curve

Michael E. Staub

The University of North Carolina Press
232 pp., 6.125 x 9.25, 13 halftones, 1 graph, notes, index
Published: November 2018
Hardcover ISBN: 978-1-4696-4359-5

The 1954 Brown v. Board of Education decision required desegregation of America’s schools, but it also set in motion an agonizing multidecade debate over race, class, and IQ. In this innovative book, Michael E. Staub investigates neuropsychological studies published between Brown and the controversial 1994 book The Bell Curve. In doing so, he illuminates how we came to view race and intelligence today.

In tracing how research and experiments around such concepts as learned helplessness, deferred gratification, hyperactivity, and emotional intelligence migrated into popular culture and government policy, Staub reveals long-standing and widespread dissatisfaction—not least among middle-class whites—with the metric of IQ. He also documents the devastating consequences—above all for disadvantaged children of color—as efforts to undo discrimination and create enriched learning environments were recurrently repudiated and defunded. By connecting psychology, race, and public policy in a single narrative, Staub charts the paradoxes that have emerged and that continue to structure investigations of racism even into the era of contemporary neuroscientific research.

La connaissance et l'expertise sexuelles en Europe de l'Est

Sexual Knowledge and Expertise in Europe’s East, before and after 1945

Call for Papers

Brno 3-5 June 2019

The history of sexology has recently shown considerable interest in exploring the global dimensions of the emergence of sexual science. Important work has begun to chart the worldwide transnational networks of exchange and expertise, and examine how sexual science assumed different shapes in various locales. Such scholarship has explored the translation, interpretation and circulation of sexual knowledge across linguistic, cultural and national boundaries. It has begun to recognize that sexual scientific knowledge was constituted by and then transformed through dynamic, multi-directional and truly global interactions.
East-Central Europe played a key role in shaping the development of sexual science from the 1880s onwards, yet relatively little attention has been paid to the history of sexual science in non-German speaking East-Central Europe and its significance in global networks of knowledge production. One goal of this conference is to bring the history of sexual science in East-Central Europe into the global history of sexology.
The aim of this conference is to enhance our current understandings of the transnational histories of sexual science in its broadest sense, from psychoanalytic and medical debates about and approaches to gender and sexuality, to conversations about sex and sexuality in literature, theatre and art, to the impacts of scientific notions of sex on politics.
The conference therefore invites participants from various disciplines and fields to ask:
· How was East-Central European sexology involved in global networks of knowledge exchange?
· How did definitions of the boundaries and contours of sexual science (e.g. as a field or discipline) shift across national and linguistic contexts?
· How did East-Central European sexual science view and perceive sexual scientific debates within the region, in other parts of the world and how was the Eastern science perceived elsewhere?
Moreover, this conference invites delegates to explore the role varying definitions of authority and expertise played in the construction of sexual knowledge:
· Did understandings of authority and expertise differ in significant ways across national, linguistic and cultural contexts?
· What strategies did East-Central European sexual scientists use to position themselves as experts on a local and global level?
· What role did patients in East-Central Europe play in the construction of sexual knowledge?
· What are the links between scientific engagements with sex and sexuality and both literary and artistic cultures and politics discourses? In the East-Central European context, how did literary, artistic, or ideological imaginings of sexuality intersect with scientific debates?
Finally, this conference puts the particular changing cultures of knowledge production in Eastern Europe before and after 1945 under investigation. It asks:
· What kind of changes did cultures and networks of sexual-knowledge exchange undergo throughout the second half of the 20th century?
· What status did sex research have in socialist East-Central Europe and how did this differfrom the cultures of the first half of the twentieth century?
· To what extent did sexual debates shift when socialism 'went global'?
· How can we explore the complex relationship between ideas of Communist/Marxist liberation of the people and the rhetoric of sexual liberation? Were socialist and sexual revolutions compatible? What is the relationship between the use of the language of equality and happiness in debates about sex and moments of political dissent and reform, e.g. in 1968?
· In what ways has sexual science interacted with, contributed to or undermined different narratives of modernity? Can this framework help us understand the importance of sexology in East-Central Europe as a vehicle of modernization?

The workshop will take place on 3-5 June, 2019 at the Faculty of Social Studies, Masaryk University
in Brno, Czech Republic. Papers will be delivered in 20 minute slots. We will ask that you submit
a summary of your paper for pre-circulation to all delegates.
Important dates:
January 30th 2019: deadline for 300-500 word abstract together with a 1-page CV detailing your
research interests to
February 2019: notification of acceptance for the workshop
May 1, 2019: deadline for a summary of your paper (no more than 3000 words) to

This workshop is collaboratively organized by Bryn Mawr College, Central European University,
Masaryk University, University of Exeter and University of Warsaw.

samedi 19 janvier 2019

La médecine rurale en Roumanie

Physicians, Peasants and Modern Medicine. Imagining Rurality in Romania, 1860-1910

Constantin Bărbulescu

Translator:  Angela Jianu

CEU Press Studies in the History of Medicine
308 pages
Publication date: 2018
ISBN:  978-963-386-267-4

This book provides a historical narrative about Romania’s modernization. It focuses on one group of the country’s elites in the late nineteenth century, health professionals, and on the vision of a modern Romania that they constructed as they interacted with peasants and rural life. Doctors ventured out from the cities and became a familiar sight on the dusty country roads of Moldavia and Wallachia, for new health legislation required general practitioners (medici de plasă) to visit the villages in their districts twice every month. Some of them were motivated by charity, and others by patriotism, as the rural world became ever more prominent in Romania's national ideology. 
Based on original research, including doctors’ public health reports and memoirs, the book describes the rural conditions in Romania between 1860 and 1910 and the doctors' efforts to improve the peasants’ way of life. The author illuminates a variety of aspects of social life based on the doctors' reports on the peasant and the rural world, including general hygiene, clothing, dwellings, nutrition, drinking habits and healing. He places official measures, laws, regulations, and modern norms about public health in the context of a broader modernizing process.

Biologie et médecine au prisme de l'épistémologie historique

La philosophie des sciences du vivant. Biologie et médecine au prisme de l'épistémologie historique.

Appel à Communications

5èmes Journées d’études sur l’Épistémologie Historique

Paris, 16-17-18 mai 2019

École doctorale de Philosophie ED 280
Université Paris 1 Panthéon-Sorbonne

Institut d’Histoire et de Philosophie des Sciences et des Techniques
(UMR 8590, Paris 1/CNRS)

Centre de Philosophie Contemporaine de la Sorbonne,
Institut des Sciences Juridique et Philosophique de la Sorbonne (UMR 8103, Paris 1)

Depuis plusieurs années, les questions que la biologie et la médecine posent à la philosophie ont connu un net regain d’intérêt à l’échelle internationale. Les sciences biomédicales sont ainsi (re)devenues des objets d’investigation privilégiés au sein de traditions de recherche aussi différentes que l’épistémologie historique et la philosophie analytique. Si l’intérêt pour les vivants et la vie a toujours existé du côté de l’épistémologie historique, comme en témoignent par exemple les œuvres d’Auguste Comte ou de Georges Canguilhem, il est en revanche bien plus récent pour la philosophie d’orientation analytique. Dans un tel contexte, l’essor, depuis les années 1980, de la philosophie de la biologie n’en est que plus spectaculaire.

Un aspect particulièrement saillant de ces nouveaux travaux sur la biologie et la médecine est leur ambition d’intervenir le plus directement possible dans certaines dimensions des débats scientifiques contemporains. Comme si les développements de la science – et en particulier ceux de la biologie moléculaire et de la théorie de l’évolution – appelaient à questionner à nouveau certaines catégories traditionnelles comme celle d’organisme, d’individu, d’espèce, ou d’autres plus récentes, au premier rang desquelles les concepts de gène ou de cellule.

La position épistémologique particulière de la biologie explique aussi qu’elle constitue un lieu privilégié pour toute réflexion sur la normativité et le statut des normes, leur définition entre nature et société. Il n’est dès lors pas surprenant que les avancées de la biologie soient autant de nouvelles questions adressées à la société sur les plans éthiques et politiques. L’impressionnant développement des techniques médicales et des biotechnologies n’en finit pas d’interroger des notions de sens commun comme celles de « vie », « santé » ou « maladie ». De leur côté, les progrès des neurosciences, en particulier dans la localisation cérébrale des fonctions mentales, posent à la philosophie le défi d’une réflexion sans cesse à reprendre sur le « moi » et l’identité personnelle. La clarification ces notions et des enjeux attenants intéresse au premier chef l’espace public de nos sociétés contemporaines.

Enfin, la réflexion philosophique rencontre aussi très directement le problème des conditions de possibilité d’une authentique science des vivants. Cette question a traversé une part importante de l’histoire de la philosophie, depuis Kant jusqu’à Rheinberger et Müller-Wille, en passant par Bergson et Canguilhem. L’ancienne alternative entre mécanisme et vitalisme demande aujourd’hui à être retravaillée, à la faveur notamment de perspectives plus organicistes étroitement liées pour certaines à l’essor de la biologie des systèmes ou biologie intégrative.

Ce sont ces thématiques qui seront au cœur des cinquièmes Journées d’étude sur l’Epistémologie Historique. Comme les années précédentes, nous souhaitons que le sujet retenu soit l’occasion d’une rencontre entre des philosophes et historiens des sciences aux options méthodologiques variées. Nous désirons donc recevoir des propositions adoptant dans des proportions diverses une approche historique et/ou analytique appliquée à la clarification critique de certains des concepts les plus centraux des sciences biomédicales. Une nouvelle fois, une attention particulière sera donnée aux interventions qui proposent de discuter la distinction ainsi que les possibles rapports ou échanges entre épistémologie historique et tradition analytique, c’est-à-dire en l’occurrence entre « philosophie biologique » et « philosophie de la biologie ».

Les propositions d’interventions (max 500 mots, plus une courte présentation du candidat) sont à nous faire parvenir, avant le 11 février 2019 (date de réponse le 1 mars), en format word ou pdf à Les deux langues des journées seront le français et l’anglais.