Sven G.M. Dupré: "Glass: Materials, Knowledge, and Technologies of Transparency."

  • Datum: –15.00
  • Plats: Zoom Meeting:
  • Arrangör: Institutionen för idé- och lärdomshistoria
  • Kontaktperson: H. Otto Sibum
  • Seminarium

Avdelningen för vetenskapshistoria

Sven G.M. Dupré, Utrecht University, Research Institute for History and Art History: "Glass: Materials, Knowledge, and Technologies of Transparency."

Abstract: Today, glass is ubiquitous, from window glass to tableware, and from eyeglasses to glass fibres, even to the extent to become almost invisible. However, this ubiquity has not always been there. Moreover, transparency, which from the 19th century we readily associate with glass, was an affordance of the material only fulfilled by the development of new glass technologies in the late medieval and early modern period. Without transparent glass, there would be no telescopes and microscopes, and neither glass supports of magic lantern slides and photographs. Yet, glass as a material of which the instruments and images of science were made, has often remained in the background. This talk moves glass to the center of the stage: glass is closely intertwined with the way we sensually experience and know the world. Without glass we would indeed live in a different material world, but we would certainly understand it differently, and even think of knowledge differently.