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Edited by Josefina Rodríguez-Arribas, Charles Burnett, Silke Ackermann and Ryan Szpiech

First published as a special issue of the journal Medieval Encounters (vol. 23, 2017), this volume, edited by Josefina Rodríguez-Arribas, Charles Burnett, Silke Ackermann, and Ryan Szpiech, brings together fifteen studies on various aspects of the astrolabe in medieval cultures. The astrolabe, developed in antiquity and elaborated throughout the Middle Ages, was used for calculation, teaching, and observation, and also served astrological and medical purposes. It was the most popular and prestigious of the mathematical instruments, and was found equally among practitioners of various sciences and arts as among princes in royal courts. By considering sources and instruments from Muslim, Christian, and Jewish contexts, this volume provides state-of-the-art research on the history and use of the astrolabe throughout the Middle Ages.

Contributors are Silke Ackermann, Emilia Calvo, John Davis, Laura Fernández Fernández, Miquel Forcada, Azucena Hernández, David A. King, Taro Mimura, Günther Oestmann, Josefina Rodríguez-Arribas, Sreeramula Rajeswara Sarma, Petra G. Schmidl, Giorgio Strano, Flora Vafea, and Johannes Thomann.

Edited by Frédéric Goubier and Magali Roques

Since antiquity, philosophers have investigated how change works. If a thing moves from one state to another, when exactly does it start to be in its new state, and when does it cease to be in its former one? In the late Middle Ages, the "problem of the instant of change” was subject to considerable debate and gave rise to sophisticated theories; it became popular and controversial again in the second half of the twentieth century. The studies collected here constitute the first attempt at tackling the different aspects of an issue that, until now, have been the object of seminal but isolated forays. They do so in through a historical perspective, offering both the medieval and the contemporary viewpoints.
Contributors are Damiano Costa, Graziana Ciola, William O. Duba, Simo Knuuttila, Greg Littmann, Can Laurens Löwe, Graham Priest, Magali Roques, Niko Strobach, Edith Dudley Sylla, Cecilia Trifogli and Gustavo Fernández Walker.

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Joshua M. Moritz

After a bibliographic introduction highlighting various research trends in science and religion, Joshua Moritz explores how the current academic and conceptual landscape of theology and science has been shaped by the history of science, even as theology has informed the philosophical foundations of science. The first part assesses the historical interactions of science and the Christian faith (looking at the cases of human dissection in the Middle Ages and the Galileo affair) in order to challenge the common notion that science and religion have always been at war. Part two investigates the nature of the interaction between science and Christian theology by exploring the role that metaphysical presuppositions and theological concepts have played—and continue to play—within the scientific process.

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Edited by Jan Kiely, Vincent Goossaert and John Lagerwey

The last of four two-volume sets on the key periods of paradigm shift in Chinese religious and cultural history, this book examines the transformation of values in China since 1850, in the “secular” realms of economics, science, medicine, aesthetics, media, and gender, and in each of the major religions (Confucianism, Buddhism, Daoism, Christianity) as well as in Marxist discourse. The nation and science are the values invoked most frequently, with the market and democracy a distant second. As in previous periods of fundamental change in Chinese history, rationalization and secularization have played central roles, but interiorization nearly disappears as a driving force. Also in continuity with the past, the state insists on an exclusive right to define and adjudicate orthodoxy.
Contributors include: Daniel H. Bays, Sébastien Billioud, Adam Yuet Chau, Na Chen, Philip Clart, Walter B. Davis, Arif Dirlik, Thomas David DuBois, Lizhu Fan, David Faure, Melissa Wei-Tsing Inouye, Ji Zhe, Xiaofei Kang, Eric I. Karchmer, André Laliberté, Angela Ki Che Leung, Xun Liu, Richard Madsen, David Ownby, Ellen Oxfeld, Volker Scheid, Grace Yen Shen, Michael Szonyi, Wang Chien-ch’uan, Xue Yu

The Star of Bethlehem and the Magi

Interdisciplinary Perspectives from Experts on the Ancient Near East, the Greco-Roman World, and Modern Astronomy

Edited by Peter Barthel and George van Kooten

This book is the fruit of the first ever interdisciplinary international scientific conference on Matthew's story of the Star of Bethlehem and the Magi, held in 2014 at the University of Groningen, and attended by world-leading specialists in all relevant fields: modern astronomy, the ancient near-eastern and Greco-Roman worlds, the history of science, and religion. The scholarly discussions and the exchange of the interdisciplinary views proved to be immensely fruitful and resulted in the present book. Its twenty chapters describe the various aspects of The Star: the history of its interpretation, ancient near-eastern astronomy and astrology and the Magi, astrology in the Greco-Roman and the Jewish worlds, and the early Christian world – at a generally accessible level. An epilogue summarizes the fact-fiction balance of the most famous star which has ever shone.

Cover illustration: © Michael Farrell

David Livingstone and the Myth of African Poverty and Disease

A Close Examination of his Writing on the Pre-colonial Era

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Sjoerd Rijpma

This study about David Livingstone is different from all other publications about him. Here, Livingstone is not the main topic of interest; the focus of the author is on nutrition and health in pre-colonial Africa and Livingstone is his key informant.
David Livingstone and the Myth of African Poverty and Disease is an unusual book. After a close examination of Livingstone’s writings and comparative reading of contemporary authors, Sjoerd Rijpma has been able to draw cautious conclusions about the relatively favourable conditions of health and nutrition in southern and central Africa during the pre-colonial period. His findings shed new light on the medical history of Sub-Saharan Africa. The surprise awaiting travellers in and also before 19th century Africa was that the inhabitants of the interior, even the ‘slaves’, were healthier and better fed than many of their contemporaries in Europe’s Industrial Revolution.

“An impressive piece of scholarship, truly forensic in its close reading and re-reading of Livingstone’s published works and those of other travellers during the same era, clearly a labour of love which has taken years to complete” (Joanna Lewis).

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Edited by Marc Hersant and Catherine Ramond

La représentation de la vie psychique dans les récits factuels et fictionnels de l’époque classique rassemble des études de spécialistes de l’histoire (au sens large, incluant les Mémoires ou l’autobiographie) et de la fiction narrative des XVIIe et XVIIIe siècles. Cet ouvrage traite une question théorique rarement appliquée à la première modernité : l’entrée dans l’intériorité des personnages, ce que Dorrit Cohn a appelé la « transparence intérieure », est-elle réservée à la seule fiction ? Permet-elle d’établir une ligne de partage claire entre récit factuel et récit de fiction à une époque où se multiplient des catégories mouvantes et hybrides telles les pseudo-mémoires, les romans-mémoires ou les nouvelles historiques ?

Antiquarianism, Language, and Medical Philology

From Early Modern to Modern Sino-Japanese Medical Discourses

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Edited by Benjamin A. Elman

Based on several research seminars, the authors in this volume provide fresh perspectives of the intellectual and cultural history of East Asian medicine, 1550-1800. They use new sources, make new connections, and re-examine old assumptions, thereby interrogating whether and why European medical modernity is an appropriate standard for delineating the modern fate of East Asia’s medical classics. The unique importance of early modern Europe in the history of modern medicine should not be used to gloss over the equally unique and thus different developments in East Asia. Each paper offers an important contribution to understanding the dynamics of East Asian medicine, namely, the relationship between medical texts, medical practice, and practitioner identity. Furthermore, the essays in this volume are especially valuable for directing our attention to the movement of medical texts between different polities and cultures of early modern East Asia, especially China and Japan. Of particular interest are the interactions, similarities, and differences between medical thinkers across East Asia,
Contributors include: Susan Burns, Benjamin A. Elman, Asaf Goldschmidt, Angela KC Leung, Federico Marcon, MAYANAGI Makoto, Fabien Simonis, Daniel Trambaiolo, and Mathias Vigouroux.


Colonial Survey and Native Landscapes in Rural South Africa, 1850 - 1913

The Politics of Divided Space in the Cape and Transvaal

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Lindsay F. Braun

In Colonial Survey and Native Landscapes in Rural South Africa, 1850 - 1913, Lindsay Frederick Braun explores the technical processes and struggles surrounding the creation and maintenance of boundaries and spaces in South Africa in the nineteenth and early twentieth centuries. The precision of surveyors and other colonial technicians lent these enterprises an illusion of irreproachable objectivity and authority, even though the reality was far messier.

Using a wide range of archival and printed materials from survey departments, repositories, and libraries, the author presents two distinct episodes of struggle over lands and livelihoods, one from the Eastern Cape and one from the former northern Transvaal. These cases expose the contingencies, contests, and negotiations that fundamentally shaped these changing South African landscapes.

Edited by Ursula Klein and Carsten Reinhardt

Leading historians of chemistry present fascinating case studies illuminating a broad array of objects of inquiry in modern chemistry, from the eighteenth century until today. These include every day items such as glass as well as invisible networks of experimentation and theory.

This collection of essays is based on two workshops that took place at the Max Planck Institute for the History of Science in Berlin and the CHF in Philadelphia.

Distribution in the Americas by Science History Publications/USA, ISBN 978-0-88135-460-7