On the Margins of Knowledge

At the end of June, the bi-annual Gewina Woudschoten Conference was held in the small city of Zeist in the Netherlands. It is primarily a conference attended by researchers from the field of history of science, but this year the conference theme was Towards a History of Knowledge and had attracted researchers from several neighboring disciplines as information history and book history. In his keynote presentation Stéphane Vandamme, professor at the EUI, talked about “how the historians of knowledge found a way of consolidating its heuristic position by moving to a global framework, though he pointed that this shift doesn’t mean that history of Knowledge is the future of history of science in a global perspective”. During the two days, nearly 50 presentations sought to answer questions like: What is the history of knowledge? How does it relate to the history of science? And what do we gain by adopting the history of knowledge? The conference spanned a width in chronological aspects and thematical aspects of the history of knowledge from East German polar science to a discussion on how the margins of texts became zones of conflict in the interpretation of texts amongst Medieval scholars. One of the highlights of the 8th Gewina Woudschoten Conference was the launch of the Journal for the History of Knowledge, JHoK, the new official journal of Gewina.

 

Laura Skouvig & Maria Simonsen

 

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