The Oral History Project of the British Society for the History of Science (BSHS) ended on 10 July 1998, after almost nine months' duration. Twenty-nine interviews are now available on fifty-eight tapes and in transcript – not all, but nearly all of them on open access for scholars. With this oral history project, the BSHS commemorates its fiftieth anniversary. In particular it pays tribute to the field in the decades 1945–65, during which the historical, philosophical and sociological study of science and technology expanded in an unprecedented way, not least of all in higher education. Who were the individuals involved in this expansion, what factors contributed to its coming about, what purposes did the subject serve, what changes did it undergo, what audiences and functions had the BSHS, how was the process of expansion situated within the larger cultural and political context of the time and did it reflect that context? The project sought to explore these and similar questions.
The project's purpose was to gather material which would otherwise go unrecorded, and thus to create an archival resource for future research, consisting of the interviews (on tape and in transcript), returned questionnaires and any material (biographical or other) received in the course of this project.
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