An introduction to history of science and the emotions

Otniel E. Dror, Bettina Hitzer, Anja Laukötter, Pilar León-Sanz

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

This essay introduces our call for an intertwined history-of-emotions/ history-of-science perspective. We argue that the history of science can greatly extend the history of emotions by proffering science qua science as a new resource for the study of emotions. We present and read science, in its multiple diversities and locations, and in its variegated activities, products, theories, and emotions, as constitutive of the norms, experiences, expressions, and regimes of emotions. Reciprocally, we call for a new reading of science in terms of emotions as an analytical category. Assuming emotions are intelligible and culturally learned, we extend the notion of emotion to include a nonintentional and noncausal “emotional style,” which is inscribed into (and can reciprocally be generated by) technologies, disease entities, laboratory models, and scientific texts. Ultimately, we argue that emotional styles interrelate with broader emotional cultures and thus can contribute to and/or challenge grand historical narratives.

Original languageAmerican English
Pages (from-to)1-18
Number of pages18
JournalOsiris
Volume31
Issue number1
DOIs
StatePublished - 2016

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Cultural Studies
  • Arts and Humanities (miscellaneous)

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