2012 Annual Meeting of the Society for Social Studies of Science
San Diego 9-12 October 2013
Call for papers:
The Cultural Construction of Curiosity in Science
Curiosity is considered to be fundamental for science. But is curiosity just a psychological drive, manifested in individual scholars, or could it be viewed as embodied and socially enacted? This panel explores curiosity as a collective, constructed and distributed emotion. We welcome papers addressing the following questions:
How is the meaning of curiosity interpreted within scientific communities and individual researchers? Which factors are defined as central for curiosity? Classic studies in STS emphasize that social relationships coevolve with scientific practice. How then does shared notions of curiosity contribute to social coherence in scientific communities? Moreover, STS has devoted attention to how knowledge circulates, e.g. between different laboratories. How does curiosity fit into this analytical framework? Do notions of curiosity travel together with knowledge and practitioners? How has the value and joy of curiosity enrolled the public in knowledge making? The embodied character of knowledge making is by now a well-established topic. What is the embodied nature of curiosity? How can it be understood as co-constructed with gender, class and sexuality in knowledge-making practices?
By using curiosity as an example, we wish to connect STS with a burgeoning research on emotions as contextually plastic, culturally and socially constructed phenomena. STS has developed sophisticated understandings of how scientific knowledge making is a social and cultural effort. However, very little has been said about the social and cultural construction of scientific emotions, such as curiosity.
Please submit your abstract of 250 words to
Staffan Bergwik email@example.com
Helena Pettersson firstname.lastname@example.org
no later than March 15 2013.
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