Science and capitalism : entangled histories / edited by Lukas Rieppel, William Deringer, and Eugenia Lean.

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About this work


The historical relationship between science and capitalism has long stood as a central question in science studies, at least since its foundations in the 1930s. Taking inspiration from the recent surge of scholarly interest in the "history of capitalism," as well as from renewed attention to political economy by historians of science and technology, this Osiris volume revisits this classic quandary, foregrounding the entanglements between these two powerful and unruly historical forces and tracing the diverse ways they mutually shaped each other. Key attention is paid to the practices of knowledge work that enable both scientific and capitalistic action and to the diversity of global sites and circuits in which science/capitalism have been performed. The assembled papers excavate an array of tangled nodes at the science/capitalism nexus, spanning from the seventeenth century to the twenty-first, from Nevada to Central Asia to Japan, from microbiology to industrial psychology to public health.


[Chicago, Illinois] : [University Of Chicago Press], [2018]

Physical description

iv, 348 pages : illustrations ; 26 cm.


First edition.


Copy 1. Incorrect (volume 32) barcode on paperback copy.


Acknowledgments. Introduction : Introduction: the entangled histories of science and capitalism / Luka Rieppel, Eugenia Lean, and William Deringer -- Sciences and economies in the scientific revolution: concepts, materials, and commensurable fragments / Harold J. Cook. Entangled infrastructures : Feeding desire: generative environments, meat markets, and the management of sheep intercourse in Great Britain, 1700-1750 / Emily Pawley -- Sugar machines and the fragile infrastructure of commodities in the nineteenth century / David Singerman -- Starting up biology in China: performance of life at BGI / Hallam Stevens. Entangled calculations : Compound interest corrected: the imaginative mathematics of the financial future in early modern England / William Deringer -- Proving future profit: business plans as demonstration devices / Martin Giraudeau -- Lies, damned lies, and (bourgeois) statistics: ascertaining social fact in midcentury China and the Soviet Union / Arunabh Ghosh. Entangled ontologies : The microbial production of expertise in Meiji Japan / Victoria Lee -- "Safe driving depends on the man at the wheel": psychologists and the subject of auto safety, 1920-55 / Lee Vinsel -- Comstock capitalism: the law, the lode, and the science / Paul Lucifer -- Organizing the marketplace / Lukas Rieppel -- "Scientific crude" for currency: prospecting for specimens in Stalin's Siberia / Julia Fein. Entangled circuits : Making the Chinese copycat: trademarks and recipes in early twentieth-century global science and capitalism / Eugenia Lean -- Microbiology and the imperatives of capital in international agro-biodiversity preservation / Courtney Fullilove -- Smoke ring: from American tobacco to Japanese data / Sarah Milov. Notes on contributors -- Index.

Bibliographic information

Includes bibliographical references and index.


Where to find it

  • LocationStatus
    History of Medicine
    Open shelves

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  • 9780226602325
  • 022660232X