How can neuroscience help us understand the past? This question is the focus of a workshop to be held 6-7 June 2011 at the Rachel Carson Center in Munich, Germany.
Disciplines can make major advances when they synthesize their ideas and methods with those of other disciplines. This workshop focuses on the ways in which neuroscience might help us understand history (and, ideally, vice versa). Following the lead of Daniel Smail (Deep History and the Brain, 2008), we refer to this synthesis as neurohistory.
We will focus on four major questions.
1. What ideas and methods have neuroscientists developed that historians can use to shed a new light on the past (and vice versa)?
2. What new research questions can neuroscience suggest for historians (and vice versa)?
3. What are the biggest challenges in developing neurohistory as a field, and how can they be overcome?
4. How might neurohistory shed light on the interaction between people and their environment, in both the past and the present?
Eight to ten participants will write pre-circulated papers of about one thousand words that focus on major conceptual issues in neurohistory. We will discuss papers in the workshop, and afterwards, participants will revise them for publication in Rachel Carson Center Perspectives.
The Rachel Carson Center will pay for participants’ airfare, lodging, and meals during the workshop. The workshop’s co-conveners are Edmund Russell (email@example.com) and Arielle Helmick (firstname.lastname@example.org).
We seek proposals from scholars from any discipline with expertise in history, neuroscience, or environmental studies. Experience working at the intersection of neuroscience with history or environmental studies is welcome, but not required. One of our goals is to stimulate interest among scholars who may not have thought about these intersections before. While we expect to focus on the four questions above, we will also consider proposals that pose creative new questions.
The deadline for the receipt of proposals is 28 February 2011. The proposal consists of a cover letter and a CV. The cover letter should, in no more than two pages, describe the contributor’s background, research interests, and paper idea. We ask contributors to both pose the question his/her paper addresses, and to propose a way to answer it.
Send the cover letter and CV to Andrea Jungbauer as email attachments (email@example.com) or by mail to the Rachel Carson Center. (Leopoldstrasse 11a, 80802 Munich, Germany).
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