[SIGCIS-Members] CFP: 6th Annual HAPSAT Conference (fwd)

Allan Olley allan.olley at utoronto.ca
Fri Dec 18 13:36:41 PST 2009

Hello all,
 	This is the call for papers for my department's annual graduate 
student Conference.
Yours Truly,
Allan Olley


---------- Forwarded message ----------
Date: Tue, 15 Dec 2009 12:34:08 -0500
From: Jaipreet Virdi <jai.virdi at utoronto.ca>
Reply-To: jaipreetvirdi at gmail.com
To: HAPSAT <hapsat-list at chass.utoronto.ca>, hps-faculty-staff at chass.utoronto.ca
Subject: CFP: 6th Annual HAPSAT Conference

*Call for Papers
Instruments: Mental and Material*

*6th Annual HAPSAT Conference*

On *Sunday April 25*, HAPSAT, the Graduate Student Society at the Institute
for the History and Philosophy of Science at Technology at the University of
Toronto, will host its sixth annual conference, *Instruments: Mental and
Material. *

* *

Scientific instruments have emerged as a central theme in the history and
philosophy of science and in science and technology studies. In *Leviathan
and the Air Pump*, Shapin and Schaffer cite instruments, together with
writing style and modest witnessing, as the technologies that enable the new
scientific life. More recently, Galison’s *Image and Logic *gives instrument
makers equal standing with theorists and experimentalists within the trading
zones of scientific discovery. The historiography of medicine has also
explored how instruments played a significant role in changing the
diagnostic acumen of doctors and revolutionizing concepts of disease.
However, there is still a great deal of work to be done in order to consider
instruments as both a serious subject of study, and a resource for
historical investigation and argumentation. Similarly, since Hacking’s
seminal *Representing and Intervening*, philosophers of science have
acknowledged instruments as being of central importance to the practice of
science. They have become a nexus for worries about empiricism and standards
of evidence; Latour (*Science in Action*) for instance, has argued that
facts and artifacts are constructed in the same way, while Davis Baird (*Thing
Knowledge*) argues that instruments contain knowledge of how to produce

The keynote address will be given by *Jacalyn Duffin* (Queen’s University):
“Stethoscope: Technology and the Meaning of Life”

We welcome papers addressing, but not limited to, the following questions:

·         How do we learn from instruments? What roles do scientific
instruments play in scientific investigations of nature/

·         What is the relationship between science and instrumentation?

·         To what extent have medical instruments transformed the
patient-practitioner relationship?

·         Can abstract entities like scientific models or mathematical
equations be considered instruments? Is there anything to be gained by doing

·         How have social, cultural, and economic contexts shaped decisions
about instruments?

·         How can we, as historians, learn from instruments? Can our textual
field learn to effectively marshal material evidence?

·         How can we trust scientific instruments?

·         What kind of evidence do we get from scientific instruments?

We invite graduate students and recent graduates working in fields such as
HPS, STS< history, sociology, philosophy, anthropology, gender studies, and
law, to submit paper and panel proposals that critically engage with this
theme. For papers please email abstracts of up to 250 words to
HAPSAT at gmail.com by *March 19, 2010* and for panels please email a document
with a 250 word abstract describing the panel as a whole in addition to
individual abstracts for each paper (also 250 words). Each presenter will be
given 20 minutes.

We hope to be able to offer billeting and small travel subsidies for
graduate students traveling to Toronto for the conference.

For more details and our past programs, please go to

Apologies for cross-posting. Please distribute freely.

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