Welcome!

The Department of the History of Science is a lively interdisciplinary community of scholars and students who seek to advance understanding of science, technology, and medicine in their historical and social contexts.  Our faculty and students employ diverse approaches—from historical and ethnographic methodologies to those informed by Science and Technology Studies (STS)—to examine the past and present workings of the sciences and technology, the bases of their authority, the ethical and political dimensions of their regulation and applications, and the relationships among them and larger intellectual, cultural, social, and political trends and changes.   Faculty and student interests span medieval to contemporary times, from the local to the global.  Many of us work on topics that engage contemporary social and political themes and are relevant to policy questions and choices.  An intellectual openness to new approaches and domains of study characterizes our work.

Data Compression"SIZE MATTERS: Knowledge, Storage, and the History of Compression," seeks to examine contemporary struggles over spatial management of data and information by excavating diverse histories of compression technologies. Read More
Rachel CarsonNew PBS docu "Rachel Carson" features Naomi Oreskes.
A new PBS "American Experience" episode, "Rachel Carson," presents a riveting portrait of the woman whose groundbreaking books revolutionized our understanding of humankind's relationship to Nature, and helped foster the modern environmental movement in the US, and around the world. Prof. Naomi Oreskes lends her expert knowledge and unique viewpoint to the proceedings. Watch the full episode at pbs.org.