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Science in the Streets

Science in the Streets: A free public engagement event from the History of Science Society Thursday, Nov 21, 3-6 pm, Boston Convention & Exhibition Center

[I have asked Conevery Bolton Valencius, who teaches at UMass Boston, to write a guest post about an event she is helping to organize at this year's HSS.  Many readers of this blog are interested in popular science & science popularization, and I urge everyone to join us for what promises to be a fascinating discussion!]
Current newspaper headlines make clear how anti-science and science-illiterate many Americans are, at least about some political issues.  But there are effective and interesting efforts going on all around to engage people in the workings and the wonderings of science.  Further, historians of science are doing a lot of that work – and sometimes have particular insight about what is new or very old about rhythms of scientific skepticism or scientific enthusiasm. 
At next week’s annual conference of the History…

Remembering Sandy: Stewardship, Memory, History

A year ago I wrote a series of blog posts on Hurricane Sandy here at American Science. In them, I reported on experiences in Hoboken, New Jersey, a city that was hammered by the storm, a city in which I then lived and in which I still work at the Stevens Institute of Technology. A few months ago, I was asked to put together an event marking the Superstorm's one year anniversary. That event took place on October 29th, a year to the day that Sandy struck, and today, Stevens has posted a video of the multimedia event, which mixed videos of interviews with live presentations.

At their best, history and other forms of inquiry can include acts of stewardship, service to some community whether it is near or far. When I set about organizing this event, I approached it with the eye of a public historian and sought to create oral history videos and other records that would mark our memories of the event. (I would like to see some philosopher of history explore the relationship between writin…