Working Groups

Active Groups

The Consortium invites scholars to join our topical working groups for challenging and collegial discussion of interesting publications in their fields and of each others’ works-in-progress.

Each group meets monthly. All interested scholars are welcome to participate via online video conferencing.

To join a group:

  1. Log in, or create an account
  2. Click on a group below
  3. Click on the "Membership" tab and select "Request Group Membership"

Upcoming Meetings

Please set your timezone.

Monday, January 17, 2022 10:00 am EST

Speaker: Prof. Dominik Wujastyk, University of Alberta
Title: New findings from the Suśruta Project

Tuesday, January 18, 2022 2:00 pm EST

Magdalena Grüner, Universität Hamburg, "Else Bostelmann’s Abyssal Visions and the Ocean-Surreal"

Tuesday, January 18, 2022 6:00 pm EST

Luis Felipe Eguiarte Souza, University of Minnesota
"Julian Huxley: 'If I were a dictator', Technocracy in his popular writing and science fiction"

Wednesday, January 19, 2022 10:30 am EST

In this session, we will read Richard Levins's “Dialectics and Systems Theory” (1998) and Angela Xiao Wu's “Journalism via Systems Cybernetics: The Birth of the Chinese Communication Discipline and Post-Mao Press Reforms”.

Friday, January 21, 2022 10:00 am EST

“Engineering Studies in the Real World”  
This session explores where, why, and with what impacts engineering studies is being practiced outside of the academy. We will hear from panelists who pursue history, philosophy, ethnography as engaged practices in the investigation of engineering failures, NASA decision-making, and issues of ethics and responsibility at the National Academy of Engineering. We especially encourage others practicing engineering studies beyond the academy to join us. 

Monday, January 24, 2022 11:00 am EST


Thiago Pinto Barbosa (University of Bayreuth), "Racializing a New Nation: German Coloniality and Anthropology in Maharashtra, India" (paper draft)
Recommended supplementary reading:

Thiago Pinto Barbosa, Owen Brown, Julia Kirchner and Julia Scheurer, "Remembering the Anthropological Making of Race in Today’s University: An Analysis of a Students’ Memorial Project in Berlin," Etnofoor, Vol. 30, No. 2, Race-ism (2018), pp. 29-48

Tuesday, January 25, 2022 2:00 pm EST

Erika Milam, Princeton University

Thursday, January 27, 2022 1:00 pm EST

#1-David Dalton, UNC Charlotte, “Eduardo Urzaiz's novel, Eugenia and the Interface of aesthetics and science in constructing eugenics in postrevolutionary Mexico”
#2-Lucas Izquierdo, Independent Scholar, “Novel as technology: 19th and 20th century Peru”

Friday, January 28, 2022 12:00 pm EST

Nicole Barnes (Duke University), "On Soil and Sustainability, Or, Who Cares about Shit?"
Comments by Gonçalo Santos (University of Coimbra) 

Friday, January 28, 2022 1:00 pm EST

How have historical methods supported the reconstruction of populations, community structures, and landscape features?  Environmental baselines serve as reference points for restoration, conservation, and policy efforts, and our January session will call into question the best practices for  historical research projects that stand to impact species survival, climate change resiliency, and the integrity of ecosystems.   Our first speaker, Loren McClenachan, asks how historians can better partner with scientists to develop rigorous archival and applied methods to support understandings of env

Tuesday, February 1, 2022 11:00 am EST

Corpse Traffic, Plague, and Cholera in the Late Nineteenth Century Ottoman Iraq
(Zeinab Azerbadegan) 

Wednesday, February 2, 2022 6:00 pm EST

E. Thomas Ewing, Virginia Tech

Friday, February 4, 2022 12:00 pm EST

Katherine McLeod, New York University: "How to Display a Hoatzin: Ecology, Eugenics, and Zoology in the Early 20th Century United States"

Friday, February 4, 2022 1:30 pm EST

Ryan Jobson, “As a fire runs up a forest”: Counter-plantation futures and the Trinidad oil
strike of 1937.”

Friday, February 4, 2022 3:30 pm EST

Kirsten Moore, Cedars-Sinai, “Building Markets, Saving Lives: Insecticide-Treated Nets and a New Approach to Global Malarial Control.” Comment by Ted Brown, University of Rochester.

Tuesday, February 8, 2022 12:00 pm EST

Title: QueerCrip History and the 1960s Spectacle of White Appalachian Poverty Tours, Ryan Lee Cartwright

Thursday, February 10, 2022 10:00 am EST

Sarah Longair (University of Lincoln): The Coco-de-Mer in the 19th-Century Indian Ocean World: Connections, Conservation and Colonialism

Friday, February 11, 2022 11:00 am EST

Margaret Carlyle (University of British Columbia) 
"Household, Reproductive, and Personal Technologies"

Friday, February 11, 2022 1:00 pm EST

Guest: Dr. Alexandra Hui (Mississippi State University, Department of History)
Reading TBA
Guest sessions are moderated.
We'll briefly introduce the visitor, begin with opening remarks on the reading, then discuss participants' questions as well as topics of interest to the visitor as appropriate.
All are welcome!

Friday, February 11, 2022 4:00 pm EST

Juliet C. Larkin-Gilmore (ACLS Oscar Handlin Fellow, 2021–22, American Council of Learned Societies), title TBA
Comment by Maria John, Assistant Professor of History and Director of the Native American and Indigenous Studies Program, University of Massachusetts Boston

Tuesday, February 15, 2022 2:00 pm EST

Beatriz Martínez-Rius, Sorbonne Université.

Tuesday, February 15, 2022 6:00 pm EST

Claire Mayo, University of Tennessee
"Nineteenth Century Envirotechnical Regimes and the Great Flood of 1910: How Competing Ideas of Water Management Structured the Disaster"

Friday, February 18, 2022 10:00 am EST

Johannes Lenhard and Ann Johnson, "Systems Thinking and the Mainframe Culture of Prediction." Chapter five from their forthcoming book, Prediction as Practice and Culture.
Commentary from TBD.
Click the link below to download the book's table of contents, introduction, and fifth chapter.

Monday, February 21, 2022 10:00 am EST

Speaker: Dr Philipp A. Maas, Associate Professor, Martin Luther University Halle-Wittenberg (URL)
Title: TBA

Tuesday, February 22, 2022 2:00 pm EST

Taylor Moore, University of California, Santa Barbara

Thursday, February 24, 2022 1:00 pm EST

#1-Fabián Prieto-Nanez, Virginia Tech, “Taste, class, and popular design of technical devices in Bogota, Colombia”
#2-Sonia Robles, University of Delaware, “Blueprints for Modernity: Public radio programming in Mexico”
#3-Third presenter TBA

Friday, February 25, 2022 12:00 pm EST

Hasan Umut (PhD, McGill University), "The Confessional Turn in Early Modern Ottoman Cosmology" 
Comments by Travis Zadeh (Yale University, Religious Studies)

Monday, February 28, 2022 11:00 am EST

Anna Szöke (Tieranatomisches Theater / Helmholtz-Zentrum für Kulturtechnik, Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin), Title TBA

Wednesday, March 2, 2022 12:00 pm EST

Discussion with Anand Pandian, Professor and Department Chair of Anthropology, Johns Hopkins University
Readings TBA

Friday, March 4, 2022 12:00 pm EST

Andrea Marshall, Centre for Media and Celebrity Studies: "Zines as Nonbinary Objects and Questions of Privilege"

Friday, March 4, 2022 1:30 pm EST

Baasit Abubakr, “Currents of the Empire in South Asia: A History of Colonial Electrification in Jammu and Kashmir 1900-1947.”
Gina Surita, “The Mysterious Muscle Machine, 1900–1930.”

Friday, March 4, 2022 3:30 pm EST

Patricio Simonetto, “The Body Where I was Born in: Embodiment Repertoires During the Sex Change Transition.” 

Thursday, March 10, 2022 10:00 am EST

Aqsa Mengal (Lahore University), Dania Nasir (Lahore University), Kulsoom Din Malik (Lahore University) and Moiz Abdul Majid (Tufts University UEP): Nature in the City: Memory, Scandal and Leisure in Lahore's Urban Parks

Friday, March 11, 2022 11:00 am EST

Daniel Trambaiolo (Hong Kong University)
“Manufacturing and Marketing Medicines in Tokugawa Japan”, 

Friday, March 11, 2022 1:00 pm EST

Guest: Dr. Bernard Geoghegan
Reading TBA!

Friday, March 11, 2022 4:00 pm EST

Maria John (Assistant Professor of History and Director of the Native American and Indigenous Studies Program, University of Massachusetts Boston), title TBA
Comment by TBA

Tuesday, March 15, 2022 2:00 pm EDT

Alison Glassie, Mahindra Humanities Center, Harvard University.

Tuesday, March 15, 2022 6:00 pm EDT

Liat Spiro, College of the Holy Cross
"Patentability and Experience: Work, Class, and Risk in the Political Economy of Intellectual Property in Imperial Germany"

Friday, March 18, 2022 12:00 pm EDT

Katherine M. Reinhart, University of Wisconsin-Madison, "Art & Empire: Circulating Visual Knowledge in the Global Early Modern World"

Monday, March 21, 2022 10:00 am EDT

Speaker: Dr Cristina Pecchia, Austrian Academy of Sciences (URL)
Title: TBA

Tuesday, March 22, 2022 2:00 pm EDT

Cyrus Mody, Maastricht University

Thursday, March 24, 2022 1:00 pm EDT

#1-Lisa Munro, Independent Scholar.
#2-Yohad Zacaria, University of Chile.  "Urban, environmental, and technological impact of electrification in Chile, 19th and 20th centuries"
#3-Peter Soland, Southeast Missouri State University, "Aerial Shots and Bomber Jackets: The Role of Aviation, Celebrity, and Cinema in Re-Imagining Latin America" 

Friday, March 25, 2022 1:00 pm EDT

Merging Environmental Conservation and Historic Preservation by Barry Stiefel, Associate Professor at the College of Charleston Historic Preservation & Community Planning Program.  

Monday, March 28, 2022 11:00 am EDT

Mirjam Brusius (German Historical Institute London), Title TBA

Friday, April 1, 2022 12:00 pm EDT

Katherine Arnold, London School of Economics: "Interpreting the Collector's Logic: The Pursuit of Desiderata in Early Nineteenth-Century Southern Africa"

Friday, April 1, 2022 1:30 pm EDT

Jarrod Hore, “Reinventing a Supercontinent: Towards an Energy History of Gondwanaland.”
Sarah Stanford-McIntyre, “Data Driven: Clerical Work, Geophysics, and the Rise of Computing in the American Oil Industry.”

Wednesday, April 6, 2022 12:00 pm EDT

Discussion with John L. Jackson, Jr., Dean of the Annenberg School for Communication and University Professor at the University of Pennsylvania
Readings TBA

Wednesday, April 6, 2022 6:00 pm EDT

Molly Nebiolo, Northeastern University

Friday, April 8, 2022 11:00 am EDT


Friday, April 8, 2022 1:00 pm EDT

Guest: Dr. Peter Sachs Collopy (personal website)
Reading TBA
Guest sessions are moderated.
We'll briefly introduce the visitor, begin with introductory remarks on the reading, then discuss participants' questions as well as topics of interest to the visitor as appropriate.
All are welcome!

Friday, April 8, 2022 4:00 pm EDT

Ángel Rodríguez (Robert Wood Johnson Foundation Research Fellow, Harvard Kennedy School), “Ecology of Scientific Expeditions: A Harvard History of the Health and Human Sciences in the American Tropics, 1892–1937”
Comment by TBA

Thursday, April 14, 2022 10:00 am EDT

Cecylia Mgombele (University of Dar es Salaam), Sinyati Robinson Mark (University of Dar es Salaam) and Sarah Walshaw (Simon Fraser University): Human-Plant Relationships in Tanzania's Past: Changes, Choices, Challenges - and Specifically the Changes Brought with the Caravan Trade

Friday, April 15, 2022 12:00 pm EDT

Graylin Whitney Harrison (Stanford University)

Monday, April 18, 2022 10:00 am EDT

Speaker: Eric Gurevitch, PhD candidate
South Asian Languages and Civilizations and
Committee on Conceptual and Historical Studies of Science
University of Chicago
Title: Diseases of the eye: Debating the physiology of vision across medicine and philosophy in medieval India

Tuesday, April 19, 2022 2:00 pm EDT

David McCaskey, University of California, Riverside, "Holy Mackerel: Fish, Science, and the Politics of Food Aid in Cold War Southeast Asia"

Tuesday, April 19, 2022 6:00 pm EDT

Evan Hepler-Smith, Duke University
"Chemical ciphers: war and peace"

Tuesday, April 26, 2022 2:00 pm EDT

Patricia Marcos, Doctoral Candidate, University of California, San Diego

Thursday, April 28, 2022 1:00 pm EDT

#1-Lucas Erichsen, Federal University of Rio de Janeiro (Universidade Federal do Rio de Janeiro), "Under the Sun, between tropics: meat preservation technology in late 19th century Brazil"
#2-Marisa Lerer, Manhattan College, “Technology and Memorial Design in the Southern Cone”
#3-Third presenter TBA

Friday, April 29, 2022 12:00 pm EDT

Energy History in Asia: Book Discussion

Victor Seow, Carbon Technocracy: Energy Regimes in Modern East Asia (University of Chicago Press, 2021)

On Barak, Powering Empire: How Coal Made the Middle East and Sparked Global Carbonization (University of California Press, 2020) 

Friday, May 6, 2022 1:30 pm EDT

Michaela Rife, “Capturing Petroleum Publics: The Visual Culture of Oil on the Dust Bowl Plains.”
Jordan Howell, Capital Be Dammed: Alcoa and the History of Hydroelectric Power in North America, 1890-1950.”

Thursday, May 12, 2022 10:00 am EDT

Anna Arabindan-Kesson (Princeton University) in conversation with Annalee Davis: Sites of Healing: Plantation Histories and Histories of Care in the Work of Annalee Davis

Friday, May 13, 2022 11:00 am EDT

 Taylor McCall (Medieval Academy of America)
“Picturing the Dissected Female Body in Manuscripts c.1200-1500"

Friday, May 13, 2022 1:00 pm EDT

Guest visit: Dr. Mara Mills (Media, Culture and Communication, NYU / personal website)
Reading TBA
Guest sessions are moderated.
We'll briefly introduce the visitor, begin with introductory remarks on the reading, then discuss participants' questions as well as topics of interest to the visitor as appropriate.
All are welcome.

Friday, May 13, 2022 3:00 pm EDT

Alexis Boylan, University of Conneticut, ch. “Artless Space” from ms. Not an Art Museum: The Visual Culture of the American Museum of Natural History, 1900-2017.

Monday, May 16, 2022 10:00 am EDT

Speaker: Madhu K. Parameswaran, Assistant Professor, Department of Dravyagunavijnanam, Vaidyaratnam P.S. Varier Ayurveda College (URL)
Title: TBA

Tuesday, May 17, 2022 2:00 pm EDT

Katherine Sinclair, Rutgers University.

Tuesday, May 17, 2022 6:00 pm EDT

Thomas Zeller, University of Maryland, College Park
"Consuming Landscapes: What We See When We Drive and Why It Matters"

Thursday, May 26, 2022 1:00 pm EDT

#1-David Pretel, Pompeu Fabra University, “Green Gold Modernity: Machines, Peonage and Henequen in Yucatan’s Gilded Age”
#2-Leida Fernandez-Prieto, Centro de Ciencias Humanas y Sociales - Consejo Superior de Investigaciones Científicas, “Mute Witnesses:  Mapping the Meanings of the Images on the History of Cuban Agriculture”
#3-Third presenter TBA

Friday, May 27, 2022 12:00 pm EDT

Sayori Ghoshal (Columbia University), "Race in Nationalist Science: Making Anthropology an Indian Discipline through the Question of Origin, 1920-1950"

Thursday, June 9, 2022 10:00 am EDT

Melanie Boehi (University of the Witwatersrand), Phakamani m’Africa Xaba (Kirstenbosch National Botanical Garden), and Luciano Concheiro San Vicente (The National Autonomous University of Mexico): Reimagining Botanical Gardens and Urban Parks in a Time of Crisis

Friday, June 10, 2022 11:00 am EDT

Yan Liu (University at Buffalo, SUNY)
“Scent from Afar: A Transcultural History of Aromatics in Medieval China”

Friday, June 10, 2022 1:00 pm EDT

Guest: Dr. Sarah Fuchs. Assistant Professor of Music History and Cultures (Syracuse University)
Reading TBA!

Thursday, June 23, 2022 1:00 pm EDT

Agenda (Updated 9/5/21)
Final Session: Thursday, 6/23/22, 1:00pm-2:30pm EDT

  • Meeting with volume editor. 
  • Discussion of Next Steps 


Friday, June 24, 2022 12:00 pm EDT

Elise Burton (University of Toronto), "A Lexicon of Science"

Thursday, July 14, 2022 10:00 am EDT

Maxmillian J Chuhila (University of Dar es Salaam): Green Imperialism and Biomedical Campaigns in Colonial Tanganyika

Friday, September 9, 2022 11:00 am EDT


Friday, October 14, 2022 11:00 am EDT

Lavinia Maddaluno (Ca’ Foscari, University of Venice)
“Water Management and Public Health in Spanish Milan”

Friday, November 11, 2022 11:00 am EST

Ben Breen (University of California, Santa Cruz)
"Colonial Magic and Spaces of Healing in the Seventeenth Century"

Friday, December 9, 2022 11:00 am EST

Meredith Gamer (Columbia University)
“William Hunter's Bedside Manner”