Prof. Karine Chemla (SPHERE, CNRS & Université de Paris) will give the Zeeman lecture 'The Shaping of Scientific Classics for Modern Uses: An Invitation to a Critical Approach'.
Many of the classical works on which historians draw today in their research are de facto editorial products of the 19th and the 20th centuries. Scholarly works do not escape this rule. Which actors produced these works, and following which procedures? Which values did they prize, and which readerships did they have in mind? This talk argues that a historical approach to the actual shaping of these classics is today an essential task to undertake, not only in and of itself, but to help us use these works with the appropriate critical distance.
Karine Chemla, Senior Researcher at the French National Center for Scientific Research (CNRS), in the laboratory SPHERE (CNRS & Université de Paris), focuses, from a historical anthropology viewpoint, on the relationship between mathematics and the various cultures in the context of which it is practiced. Chemla published Les Neuf Chapitres (with Guo Shuchun, 2004). She edited The History of Mathematical Proof in Ancient Traditions (2012); Texts, Textual acts and the History of Science (with J. Virbel, 2015); The Oxford Handbook of Generality in Mathematics and the Sciences (with R. Chorlay and D. Rabouin, 2016); and Cultures without culturalism: The making of scientific knowledge (with Evelyn Fox Keller, 2017).
Karine Chemla is also Zeeman Fellow at the Vossius Center in 2019.
The lecture will be followed by drinks until 18:30.