row of astrolabes

Biennial History of Astronomy Workshop - ND XI June 12–16, 2013


Note: The printed schedule you will receive when you arrive on campus will be the definitive schedule.

All talks will take place in McKenna Hall, rooms 210–214; poster papers will be displayed outside of these rooms.

Books will be on display in room 202. Lastly, refreshments will be available adjacent to these rooms.

Wednesday, June 12 Workshop Opens
7:00 pm Public lecture, Hesburgh Library Auditorium (room 107)
“Islam at the Crossroads: Reflections on the History and Historiography of Astronomical Transmission” (download the public lecture poster here)

F. Jamil Ragep, the Canada Research Chair in the History of Science in Islamic Societies and Director of the Institute of Islamic Studies at McGill University in Montreal, Canada (abstract).
  Welcome reception to follow in the Main Hall of Jordan Hall of Science
Thursday, June 13 McKenna Hall
  Poster Paper:

“The Astronomy Genealogy Project,” Joseph S. Tenn, Sonoma State University (abstract)

8:30 - 8:45 am Welcome
8:45 - 10:45 am Panel: Discovery and Classification in Astronomy: The Nature of Discovery and its Diffusion among Scientific Cultures. Organizer and Chair: Steven J. Dick, NASA (abstract)

“Discovery and Classification in Astronomy,” Steven J. Dick, NASA (abstract)

“William Huggins, Evolutionary Naturalism, and the Nature of the Nebulae,” Robert W. Smith, University of Alberta (abstract)

“Breaking Cognitive Barriers from Meteors and Comets to Lunar Samples,” David H. DeVorkin, National Air and Space Museum (abstract)

“Successfully Navigating Scientific Borderlands and Subcultures: Astronomer Walter Orr Roberts, The Sun-Earth Connection, and the National Center of Atmospheric Research,” Joseph P. Bassi, Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University/Worldwide (abstract)

10:45 - 11:15 am Break
11:15 am - 12:45 pm Paper Session
Chair: John Cirilli, Independent Scholar

“Constructivism across Islamo-European Boundaries in the Fifteenth Century: The Philosophical Transmission of the Foundations of Qushji’s Astronomical Models,” Mustapha Kara-Ali, International Islamic University, Malaysia (abstract)

“Sharing the Heavens: A Study of Medieval Scientific Translation and the Role of Language in the Advancement of Science,” Jonathan Klauke, Central Michigan University (abstract)

“The Jesuit Astronomer Giovanni Battista Carbone as a Networker,” Luís Tirapicos, Universidade de Lisboa (abstract)

12:45 - 1:00 pm Group photo outside McKenna Hall
1:00 - 2:15 pm Lunch
2:15 - 3:45 pm Paper Session
Chair: Dana Freiburger, University of Wisconsin

“Optical Diffusion: Amateur Telescope Making and the Transfer of Technical Knowledge in the International Context,” Gary L. Cameron, Iowa State University (abstract)

“The Reception of the American Amateur Telescope Making-Movement in Swedish Amateur Astronomy,” Johan Kärnfelt, University of Gothenburg (abstract)

“Variable Stars and Twentieth-Century Swedish Amateur Astronomy,” Gustav Holmberg, Lund University (abstract)

3:45 - 4:00 pm Break
4:00 - 5:30 pm Paper Session
Chair: Stephen Case, University of Notre Dame

“William Herschel’s Legacy throughout the Nineteenth Century: A Complex Case of the Diffusion of Ideas,” Woodruff T. Sullivan, III, University of Washington (abstract)

“The Melancholy Astronomer: Quetelet’s Romantic Years, 1819–1832,” Kevin Donnelly, Alvernia University (abstract)

“William Whewell, the Plurality of Worlds, and the Modern Solar System,” Michael Crowe, University of Notre Dame (abstract)

7:30 pm Evening Reception at the home of Matt & Amy Dowd, 17890 Drury Lane Ct., Granger, IN, 46530
Friday, June 14 Field trip to the Adler Planetarium
8:45 am (EDT) Bus boarding begins at McKenna Hall
9:00 am Bus departs from McKenna Hall for Adler Planetarium
10:00 am (CDT) Arrive in Chicago at the Adler Planetarium
10:00 - 10:15 am Arrival / Bathroom break / gather in Johnson 3D Theater
10:15 - 10:30 am Welcoming remarks in Johnson 3D Theater, coffee bar provided by the Adler
10:30 - Noon Free time
- Telescope Gallery Tour @ 10:30 / 11:30
- Collections Viewing in Johnson 3D Theater
Noon - 1:00 pm Lunch at Galileo’s Café
1:00 - 1:15 pm Group photo on front steps of the Adler Planetarium (if raining, then in solar system gallery)
1:15 - 1:30 pm Bathroom break / gather in Johnson 3D Theater
1:30 - 3:30 pm Paper Session
Chair: Christopher Graney, Jefferson Community and Technical College
Location: Johnson 3D Theater

“Ancient Egyptian Astronomy Online,” Robert Cockcroft and Sarah Symons, McMaster University (abstract)

“Mithra(s): From Persia to Rome on a Celestial Quadriga,” Reza Assasi, McGill University (abstract)

“Constructing Astronomical Knowledge: The User-Friendly Design of a Medieval Equatorium,” Sebastian Falk, University of Cambridge (abstract)

“Rotating Discs, Transmitting Knowledge: Volvelles in Sixteenth-Century Astronomical Textbooks,” Margaret Gaida, University of Oklahoma (abstract)

3:30 - 4:00 pm Coffee break provided by the Adler
4:00 - 5:30 pm Special Workshop (tbd) AND/OR Freetime
5:30 - 6:30 pm Dinner in Executive Lobby
6:30 - 7:00 pm Bathroom break / gather on the bus
7:00 pm Bus departs from Adler Planetarium
10:00 pm (EDT) Arrival at Notre Dame / McKenna Hall
Saturday, June 15 McKenna Hall
8:30 - 10:00 am Paper Session
Chair: Steven L. Renshaw, Kanda University of International Studies

“Were Franciscan Friars Early Copernicus Readers?,” Durruty Jesús de Alba Martínez, Universidad de Guadalajara and Salvador Galindo Uribarri, Instituto Nacional de Investigaciones Nucleares (abstract)

“Circulation of Scientific Knowledge in Mexico: Annals of the National Astronomical Observatory of Chapultepec (1880–1900),” Silvia Zueck, UNAM, and Jorge Bartolucci, UNAM (abstract)

“Establishing the San Luis Observatory: The First Astronomical Project Supported by The Carnegie Institution to Explore the Southern Hemisphere (1903–1913); A Singular Case of the Global Dimension of Science,” Jorge Bartolucci, IISUE/UNAM (abstract)

10:00 - 10:30 am Break
10:30 am - 12:30 pm Panel: Teaching the History of Astronomy: Using the Past to Inform Present Pedagogy
Organizer and Chair: Todd Timberlake, Berry College (abstract)

“’You Who laid the foundations of the earth, so that it should not be moved forever’: One Scientist’s Conversation with Those who Oppose Science with Scripture,” Christopher Graney, Jefferson Community and Technical College (abstract)

“Stepping into History: Reacting to the Past with Galileo’s Trial,” Jonathan Klauke, Central Michigan University (abstract)

“Defusing the Diffusion of Incorrect Knowledge: Hooke’s Parallax, van Maanen’s Rotations, and the Resolution of Orion,” Todd Timberlake, Berry College (abstract)

“Using the ‘Biography of Objects’ to Teach the History of Astronomy,” Voula Saridakis, Lake Forest College (abstract)

12:30 - 2:00 pm Lunch
2:00 - 4:00 pm Panel: Adventures in Astronomical Transmission: Case Studies from the Premodern Period
Organizer and Chair: F. Jamil Ragep, McGill University
Commentator: Michael Shank, University of Wisconsin (abstract)

“’All their books are in verse’: The Assimilation of Numerical Table Texts in Indian Astronomy,” Kim Plofker, Union College (abstract)

“Astronomical Diffusion over the longue durée: Three Centuries of Immanuel Bonfil’s Book of Six Wings,” Richard Kremer, Dartmouth (abstract)

“The Broader Context of Renaissance Astronomy,” Robert Morrison, Bowdoin (abstract)

4:00 - 4:15 pm Break
4:15 - 6:15 pm Paper Session
Chair: Amanda Richard, Florida State University

“Ptolemy’s Criteria for Constructing Models,” Elizabeth Hamm, Saint Mary’s College of California (abstract)

“Some Statements about Astronomy and Extraterrestrial Life in Canonical Texts of the Baha’i Religion,” Lee Minnerly, Harper College (abstract)

“It is a good thing for every man to know a little about astronomy; it will make him a better man,” Nora Boyd, University of Pittsburgh (abstract)

“My Reflection on the Telescope’s Four Hundredth,” Thomas Hockey, University of Northern Iowa (abstract)

6:15 - 7:00 pm Free Time
7:00 pm Banquet in Dining Hall, basement floor of McKenna Hall

Banquet Lecture. Title: “The Other Transmission, or How Did Muslims Manage to Transfer Astronomical Knowledge over Fifty Generations?,” F. Jamil Ragep, McGill University, and Sally Ragep, McGill University (abstract). Location: McKenna Hall rooms 210–214.
Sunday, June 16 McKenna Hall
8:30 - 10:00 am Paper Session
Chair: Marc Rothenberg, National Science Foundation

“Were Ancient Chinese Astronomy and Astrology Transmitted from Babylonia?,” David Pankenier, Lehigh University (abstract)

“Cultural Adaptation of Astronomical Knowledge in Early Japanese History,” Steven L. Renshaw, Kanda University of International Studies (abstract)

“Selective Diffusion of Astronomical Ideas in the Indian Context, Feroz Shah Tughlaq and Sawai Jai Singh: Two Case Studies,” N. Rathnasree, Nehru Planetarium, Nehru Memorial Museum and Library (abstract)

10:00 - 10:30 am Break
10:30 - Noon Paper Session
Chair: Rachael MacDonald, Yale University

“Conceptions of Space and Place in Plato’s Timaeus,” Amanda Richard, Florida State University (abstract)

“Classifying Multiverse Structures,” Eric Hatleback, University of Pittsburgh (abstract)

“The Question of the Intrinsic Curvature of Space: Diffusion between Mathematics and Astronomy, Cosmology and Epistemology (1873–1917),” Connemara Doran, Harvard University (abstract)

Noon - 12:30 pm Business Meeting

Generous support for the conference is provided by the Graduate Program in the History and Philosophy of Science at the University of Notre Dame, the Institute for Scholarship in the Liberal Arts (ISLA) in the College of Arts and Letters at the University of Notre Dame, along with the Adler Planetarium.

© 2014 University of Notre Dame.     Image Credits