Science in the Archives: Pasts, Presents, Futures. Lorraine Daston, ed.

Eric C. Stoykovich


It is a bit unfortunate that, in current parlance, the word science now embraces less than it once did, while the word archive has come to encompass so much. As a result, those who encounter Science in the Archives: Pasts, Presents, Futures, a new volume edited by Lorraine Daston, may make unreasonable assumptions about its contents, when in fact the topics covered by the twelve historically framed essays are unexpectedly broad—from the history of the planets and earth’s stratigraphy, to the archiving of human DNA samples, to the use of “stop lists” in the thirteenth century and by Google. There is something here for all serious students of the rare book and manuscript field, not just science librarians or curators of data created by or for scientists.

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