Seminar: Steven Shapin on “Moderation and Modernity: A Dietary History”

All are invited to join the upcoming meeting of the History of Knowledge Seminar Series.

> prof. Steven Shapin (Harvard University) 

‘Moderation and Modernity: A Dietary History’

Date: Thursday 17 March 2022

Time: 15:30-17:00 (CET/Amsterdam-time)
Place: Online (Microsoft Teams)

* No registration needed. Please click here to attend the meeting *

Moderation belongs to both the instrumental/scientific and the prescriptive/moral. It figures in the domains of knowledge-modes that the modern order commonly insists are distinct, and following its trajectory from past to present is a way of appreciating what was involved in their modern separation. The place of moderation in thinking about eating moves this appreciation from the abstract to the concrete: moderation as a virtue and moderation in thinking about health and about dinner tonight. Moderation was once central to expert medical counsel about eating and now it is not. How did this change comes about and what does it mean for the history of knowledge-orders? 

Steven Shapin is the Franklin L. Ford Research Professor of the History of Science at Harvard University, Fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, and recipient of the J.D. Bernal Prize of the Society for the Social Studies of Science. He has published widely in the historical sociology of scientific knowledge, and his current research interests include historical and contemporary studies of dietetics, the changing languages and practices of taste, and modern relations between academia and industry. His books include Leviathan and the Air-Pump (2011 [1985]), with Simon Schaffer) A Social History of Truth: Civility and Science in Seventeenth-Century England (1994), The Scientific Revolution (1996, translated into 16 languages), The Scientific Life: A Moral History of a Late Modern Vocation (2008), and Never Pure: Historical Studies of Science as if It Was Produced by People with Bodies, Situated in Time, Space, Culture and Society, and Struggling for Credibility and Authority (2010). 

More Information

This seminar is organized by Lukas M. Verburgt and Elske de Waal with support from the Descartes Centre, NIAS, and the Huizinga Institute. Please visit our website for more information, the full 2021-22 program, and to subscribe to our newsletter. 

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Lukas M. Verburgt, organizer

Elske de Waal, organizational assistant

History of Knowledge Seminar Series @ Utrecht University

Image: Rijksmuseum, Jacob Gole, De man met de worst,

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