Past Event

Jessica Ratcliff - Monopolizing Knowledge: The East India Company and Britain's Second Scientific Revolution

November 25, 2023
2:00 PM - 4:00 PM
Event time is displayed in your time zone.
Online and In-Person: Victoria College, University of Toronto, 91 Charles Street West, Toronto

Event Description

What is the connection between the spectacular expansion of Britain’s empire in Asia and the equally unprecedented growth of science in Britain the nineteenth century? Historians generally agree that a key element of this connection lies in the ways that colonialism enable the extraction of knowledge resources from people and environments around the world and their accumulation back in the economic centers of empire such as London. Less known is particular role played by the British East India Company and its monopoly in the growing global trade in knowledge resources in this period. This talk investigates the changing patterns of knowledge resource management at the British East India Company, focusing on the significance of those changes for Britain’s “second scientific revolution” in the nineteenth century. It covers the years between the Company’s takeover of Bengal in 1757 and the loss of its monopoly rights in 1833. 

Event Speaker

Jessica Ratcliff, Assistant Professor of Science and Technology Studies at Cornell University

Event Information

Free and open to the public; please email [email protected] to receive the Zoom link. Please visit the event webpage for additional information. Hosted by the Institute for the History and Philosophy of Science and Technology at the University of Toronto.