Algorithmic Modernity: Mechanizing Thought and Action, 1500-2000

23 Mar 2023
4:00 pm - 5:30 pm

470 Stephens Hall

Event Type
Book Launch

Massimo Mazzotti

Morgan Ames

Algorithms have been transforming human society long before the advent of computing. Yet the rhetoric of algorithmic neutrality is more alive than ever, and algorithms are often depicted as obvious and unproblematic—without context and without history. Algorithmic Modernity: Mechanizing Thought and Action, 1500-2000 draws together the history of mathematics and intellectual history to convey the enduring global history of the algorithm as a computational tool, epistemic ideal, and rhetorical figure alongside the ascendance of modernity. This collection of essays reveals how algorithms became the standard method for solving problems over the last five hundred years, from the early inclusion of algorithms in Newton’s formation of calculus to their later influence in the New Deal economy.

Join volume editors Massimo Mazzotti and Morgan G. Ames, chapter authors Caitlin C. Rosenthal and Matthew Jones, and discussant David Bates in a conversation about the social and cultural implications of algorithms since 1500 and a celebration of the release of this edited volume.

This event is sponsored by CSTMS.
Additional sponsorship comes from:  CSTMS