Nov. 14, 2019

"Rethinking the 'One-sex Body': Sex Gender and Medicine in the Medieval World"

Katharine Park
Samuel Zemurray, Jr. and Doris Zemurray Stone Radcliffe Research Professor of the History of Science, Emeritus at Harvard University

Katharine Park, the Samuel Zemurray, Jr. and Doris Zemurray Stone Radcliffe Research Professor of the History of Science, Emeritus, at Harvard University, will speak at 6 p.m. Thursday, Nov. 14, in AM-189 (the Admissions Center).

Her research and teaching focuses on the history of science and medicine in medieval and early modern Europe, with special attention to gender, sexuality and the history of the body. Her work stresses the interconnection of knowledge and practice and the importance of relating both to the social, institutional, and cultural contexts that produced them. She has pushed these interests in several different directions. One group of works, including her first book, Doctors and Medicine in Early Renaissance Florence (Princeton University Press, 1985), highlights the importance of studying the work of artisanal and empirical practitioners, male and female, alongside that of university-educated physicians. In more recent articles, as well as in her monograph, Secrets of Women: Gender, Generation, and the Origins of Human Dissection (Zone Books, 2006), she describes the way in which the medical technique of human dissection grew out of empirical practices such embalming, forensic autopsies, midwifing procedures and obstetrical surgery.

Additional areas of interest include the visual cultures of medieval and early modern science, including the use of allegorical imagery to express changing attitudes toward nature and human authority; the history of ideas of sex difference and sexuality in medieval and early modern natural philosophy and medicine; and changing ideas of the natural order reflected in the intense fascination with wonders and miracles on the part of all sectors of European society in this period.

April 4, 2019

"The Concept of the Digital"

Alexander Galloway
Professor of Media, Culture and Communication at New York University

Alexander Galloway, professor of media, culture and communication at New York University, will speak on "The Concept of the Digital" at 6 p.m. Thursday, April 4, in FA-258.

What is the digital? The question is typically answered via reference to things — things like Twitter, Playstation or computers in general. Indeed the definition of "digital" is often given through various descriptions of the latest commercial ventures and the industrial techniques that provide their footing. Yet the digital is not a description of a media artifact so much as it is a specific mode of thinking and being. In this lecture, we will define the digital explicitly, not merely by reference to actually existing media technologies, but also, and perhaps more importantly, as a specific event within philosophy.

Feb. 28, 2019

"Art/Archaeology: Beyond an Archaeology of Art"

Doug Bailey
Professor of Archaeology at San Francisco State University

Doug Bailey, professor of archaeology at San Francisco State University, will speak on "Art/Archaeology: Beyond at Archaeology of Art" at 6 p.m. Thursday, Feb. 28, in FA-258.

How do we move beyond practicing an archaeology of art that normally sees artifacts as art objects for us to examine and interpret? In this lecture, I suggest that one way forward is to explore the potentials of an art/archaeology. My proposal is that we should move beyond traditional efforts to explain or interpret the past, and that we do this in a creative way that has impact on contemporary societies. To make such a move is to break with long-standing traditions of archaeological practice and thinking. An art/archaeology follows three steps: disarticulation (i.e., to break an object from its historical context); repurposing (i.e., to use that object as a raw material to make new creative work); and disruption (i.e., to fashion that new creative work in such a way that it has impact in contemporary social and political debate).