CFP: DHST Teaching Commission Symposium: "The History of Science Textbooks" - IHPST Conference - 1-5 July 2011, Thessaloniki - Deadline: Feb. 19, 2011

DHST Teaching Commission Symposium: The History of Science
Textbooks , during IHPST Thessaloniki Conference

The Teaching Commission of the Division of History of Science and Technology (DHST) of the
International Union of History and Philosophy of Science (IUHPS) is organizing a Symposium:
History of Science Textbooks during the 11th International History, Philosophy and Science
Teaching (IHPST) Conference 1-5 July 2011, Thessaloniki, Greece
Textbooks and especially science textbooks as objects of historical study rest in the intersection of
several historiographical traditions. First, research on their role should be considered as belonging
and contributing to the history of the book, a lively field that has taken new wings in the last
decade. Second, when contents of specific science textbooks are analyzed in order to grasp the
image of science that they portray, history of science comes to the front as the appropriate
investigative discipline. Third, specific books can be selected as objects of research, exactly because
they fulfill one of the main definitions of textbooks, mainly that they have been used in education.
History of education in these cases plays an important role.
Traditional approaches to the study of textbooks have thus far focused on different aspects of the
same object, depending on the scope of the specific research or the historical discipline from which
the researcher approached their subject matter. In any case, however, there seem to be implicit
assumptions accompanying most such approaches. The creation of a textbook is usually seen as the
last existential act of the scientific community . It signifies the maturity of an established scientific
theory or even discipline, it is considered as fixed in content and meaning across different contexts
and at best, it is to act as the carrier of Exemplars from one scientific generation to the next.
Recent scholarship has challenged many of the several assumptions used in science textbook
studies. This symposium invites contributions towards the goal of reassessing the educational,
pedagogical, scientific and socio-cultural role that the science textbook has played across different
historical periods. Possible lines of research include, but are not limited to, the following:
How have science textbooks influenced educational and scientific practice in different
historical and social contexts?
How have similar textbooks been perceived in different national and social formations and
How and why have science textbooks been written and how have they been formed by the
expectations of the author, publisher or the general public?
What is the role that science textbooks play within the larger disciplinary practice?

Call for Contributions

The Symposium is part of the IHPST Conference. Participants of the Symposium should be
registered for the Conference. All those interested in participating in the Symposium should submit
title, abstract (500 words) and a proposal draft (1,500 words) by February 19, 2011. All
submissions should be in MS Word using Times New Roman 12pt and following the style of the
Science & Education journal. In brief this means first line, title (upper and lower case, bold); second
line, author s name (upper and lower case, bold); third line, institution and email.
All proposals will be reviewed by members of the scientific committee of the Conference. After
review, the accepted abstracts will be included in the Conference Book of Abstracts.
Abstracts (500 words) and proposal drafts (1500 words) should be sent by February 19th, 2011 to:

Two files should be submitted as Word attachments with files named using author s family name or
surname. Thus one labeled SURNAME_ABSTRACT_SYMPOSIUM the other labeled
SURNAME_PROPOSAL_SYMPOSIUM. Thus, smith_abstract_symposium.doc,
smith_proposal_symposium.doc. The abstract file of successful proposals will be included in the
Conference Book of Abstracts.
Authors of successful proposals will be invited to submit a paper (3,000 - 4,000 words) for the
Conference Proceedings. All submissions should be in MS Word using Times New Roman 12pt
and following the style of the Science & Education journal. Papers (3,000 - 4,000 words) for the
proceedings should be sent till April 30th, 2011 to:
Selected papers from the Symposium will be published in the Journal Almagest (Brepols
Publishers, Belgium, <>).

Limited funding is available from the DHST Council to support the participation of young
researchers in the Symposium. Applications can be made after the conference acceptance decisions
are announced. They should be sent direct to the Teaching Commission secretary, Kostas
Skordoulis (
indicating the title and abstract of accepted paper, and personal academic details.

Symposium Organizers are:
Michael Matthews (President of the DHST/ Teaching Commission)
Kostas Skordoulis (Secretary of the DHST/Teaching Commission)