Critical Intersections: Conversations on History, Race, and Science
At this informal end-of-the-quarter event, members of the Caltech community come together for a personal, wide-ranging, explorative conversation about the life of humans in science and the life of science in human society. The conversation kicks off with musings by three Caltech researchers: a scholar of humans and scientists in centuries past (all the way back to the creation of universities in history), a biologist probing the depths of the ocean and the psyche for insight into the nature of life, and a grad student in a finely-tuned superposition of despairing about his field and the world in general will offer thoughts on what it means to be a human doing science and how scientific practices and discourses might better take into account the human context of scientific knowledge and institutions.
Audience participation and thoughts from members throughout the Caltech community will be heavily incorporated, as we all reflect on how the problems and possibilities posed by previous Critical Intersections events inform our thoughts about the future of science and humanity.
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For its inaugural year of 2020-2021, the "Critical Intersections: Conversations on Race, History, and Science" seminar series is dedicated to the history leading up to and beyond eugenics. The events are jointly organized by faculty in the Division of the Humanities and Social Sciences [Maura Dykstra (Assistant Professor of History), Jennifer Jahner (Professor of English), and Hillary Mushkin (Research Professor of Art and Design)] and University Archivist Peter Collopy. Artists have been invited to participate in these events as part of the Caltech-Huntington Program in Visual Culture. Their participation in this series is supported by the James Michelin Distinguished Visitors Program.