Columbia

GR8906: Craft and Science in the Early Modern World | P. Smith

History
Graduate Seminar open to advanced undergraduates
M 10:10AM to 2PM with required lab times through the semester

This course studies the materials, techniques, settings, and meanings of skilled craft and artistic practices in the early modern period (1350-1750), in order to reflect upon a series of issues, including craft knowledge and artisanal epistemology; the intersections between craft and science; and questions of historical methodology and evidence in the reconstruction of historical experience. The course will be run as a “Laboratory Seminar,” with discussions of primary and secondary materials, as well as text-based research and hands-on work in a laboratory. This course is one component of the Making and Knowing Project of the Center for Science and Society. This course contributes to the collective production of a transcription, English translation, and critical edition of a late sixteenth-century manuscript in French, Ms. Fr. 640. In 2014-15, the course concentrated on mold-making and metalworking. In 2015-16, it focused on color-making, including pigments, varnishes, cold enamels, dyes, imitation gems, and other color processes, and in 2016-17 on vernacular natural history and practical optics. Students are encouraged to take this course for both semesters (or more), but will receive full credit only once. Different laboratory work and readings will be carried out each semester. This course will also be open to a small number of select undergraduates, with instructor’s permission and an add/drop form.

Link to Vergil

Posted in: 2017 Fall Graduate, 2017 Fall Undergraduate, ALL


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