West Coast History of Science Society

Thursday - Sunday
11 Apr - 14 Apr 2002

470 Stephens Hall

Event Type

This spring’s meeting of the West Coast History of Science Society will be held from April 11th through April 14th.

West Coast HSS is an informal and supportive gathering that particularly welcomes graduate students and postdocs. It rotates among West Coast schools, meeting this time at UCSF. Participants from beyond the West Coast are warmly encouraged to attend.


Friday, April 12, Room 474, Laurel Heights Campus, UCSF, 3333 California Street.

8:00 to 8:45 juice, coffee and rolls

8:45 – 9:00 welcome

9:00 -11:15 Session I

New Resources for Thinking about the History of Physics

Chair: Cathy Carson, UC Berkeley

Kevin Lambert, UCLA, Much Ado About Nothing: Ether Anxiety and Language in Late Victorian Britain
David Stump, University of San Francisco, Physics at the 1904 World’s Fair
Cathy Carson, UC Berkeley, Objectivity, Pluralism and Perspective: Heisenberg Between Quantum Mechanics and Social Theory
Ronald Anderson, Boston College, Post-Structuralist Resources for Tracing Developments in Mathematical Physics

11:30 – 1:00 Session II

Adventures in Medieval Medicine

Chair: Jessica Riskin, Stanford University

Amy Lindgren, UC Davis, Violent Erections and Suffocating Wombs: Gendered Sexual Dysfunctions in Medieval Spain
Ralph Drayton, UC Davis, Mediating between the Celestial and the Mundane: Medicine and Religion at Late Medieval Montpellier

1:00 – 2:00 lunch

2:30 – 4:30 Session III

Theory, Practice and Diffusion of Natural Science in the 17th and 18th Centuries

Chair: Paula Findlen, Stanford University

Chen Hongxi, UC Berkeley, The Active Role of the Chinese Scientific Tradition in the Assimilation of Foreign Sciences Exemplified by the Reform of the Calendar at the End of the Ming Dynasty
Celeste Chamberland, UC Davis, Women’s Hands and the Art of Surgery in Seventeenth-Century London
John McCaskey, Stanford University, History of the Word “Fact”: Why Did “Fact” Acquire its New Meaning in the 1720’s?
Paula Findlen, Stanford University, The Scientist’s Body: The Nature of a Woman Philosopher in Enlightenment Italy

4:45 – 7:00 Session IV

Environmental Hazards and the Re-Engineering of Nature

Chair: Ernest Hook, UC Berkeley

Joshua Dunsby, UC San Francisco, Objectiying Smog: Initial Air Pollution Research Programs in Southern California
Ernest Hook, UC Berkeley, The Limits of Science and the Construction of Human Disease: The “Love Canal” Episode and its Consequences
Gabriela Soto Laveaga, UC San Francisco, Steroids and Exclusion: Learning to Use Chemistry to Redefine a New, Modern “Mexican” Peasantry (1970-1977)
Alex Wellerstein, UC Berkeley, The Organization of Compulsory Sterilization and Eugenics in California, 1909-1950
Monika Kurath, ETH Zurich and University of St. Gallen, Asilomar and the Ongoing Debates on Biotechnology in Europe and in the U.S.
7:00 – 7:45 cocktails

Saturday, April 13, Skyline Room, 2nd Floor, Laurel Heights Campus, UCSF, 3333 California Street map

8:15 – 9:00 juice, coffee and rolls

9:00 -11:00 Session V

Institutional Studies in the History of Science

Chair: Robert Frank, UCLA

Robert Frank, UCLA, Thinking About Laboratories : 19th Century Germany and America
Ki Won Han, UC Berkeley, From Biology to Oceanography: The Formation of Oceanography at the Scripps Institution
Asa Anderson, UC Berkeley, Research Management at UCB in the 1960’s: Freedom or Control of the Researcher?
Takahiro Ueyama, Stanford University, Starting Up a Science-Based Medicine: Instrumentation of Radiation Therapy and the Formation of Stanford University Medical Center, 1952-1970.
11:15 – 12:45 Session VI

Science, Technology, Society and Business

Chair: Jessica Riskin, Stanford University

Alex Pang, Institute for the Future, The Business of STS
A. Aneesh, Stanford University, Neither Bureaucratic nor Panoptic: Algocratic Modes of Power
12:30 – 2:15 lunch

2:15 – 3:45 Session VI

Public Health in the 20th Century

Chair: Warwick Anderson, UC San Francisco

Eric Boyle, UC Santa Barbara, Beyond Mirage and Magic Bullets: Redefining Health in the 1960’s
Nicholas King, UCSF, Bioterroism, Surveillance, and American Public Health at Millennium’s End

4:00 – 6:15 Session VII

Philosophy, Psychology, Quantification and the Study of Populations

Chair: Nicholas King, UC San Francisco

Eduardo Wilner, University of Alaska, Darwin’s Experimental Unveiling of the Nature of Heritable Variation
Gabriel Wolfenstein, UCLA, The Effects of “Numbering the People”: The Cultural Impact of Censuses and Statistics on the Popular Imagination
Richard von Mayrhauser, UC Berkeley, How Intellectual “Intelligence”? Defining and Testing Mentality in Early 20th Century Psychology
Schachar Link, Stanford University, Intelligence, Science and Power: The Stanford-Binet IQ Test and the Definition of Intelligence in the Twentieth Century
Susan Marie Groppi, UC Berkeley, Emerson Hall and Philosophical Psychology: a Unified Home for a Unified Science
7:00 banquet dinner

This event is sponsored by CSTMS.
Additional sponsorship comes from:  Office for the History of Science and Technology • UCSF

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