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The Voyage of Thought

The Voyage of Thought
Navigating Knowledge across the Sixteenth-Century World


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  • Date Published: July 2017
  • availability: In stock
  • format: Hardback
  • isbn: 9781107188235

£ 39.99

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About the Authors
  • The Voyage of Thought is a micro-historical and cross-disciplinary analysis of the texts and contexts that informed the remarkable journey of the French ship captain, merchant, and poet, Jean Parmentier, from Dieppe to Sumatra in 1529. In tracing the itinerary of this voyage, Michael Wintroub examines an early attempt by the French to challenge Spanish and Portuguese oceanic hegemony and to carve out an empire in the Indies. He investigates the commercial, cultural, and religious lives of provincial humanists, including their relationship to the classical authorities they revered, the literary culture they cultivated, the techniques of oceanic navigation they pioneered, and the distant peoples with whom they came into contact. Ideal for graduate students and scholars, this journey into the history of science describes the manifold and often contradictory genealogies of the modern in the early modern world.

    • A methodological investigation into the historical and social transformations that contributed to the Scientific Revolution
    • Each chapter narrates a stage of the journey and a major theme in the history of science - information, expertise, translation, scale, trust, and replication
    • Uncovers the early modern resonance of ideas foundational to our understanding of modern scientific and experimental practice
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    • Winner, 2018 John Pickstone Prize, British Society for the History of Science

    Reviews & endorsements

    'Part of the originality of The Voyage of Thought: Navigating Knowledge across the Sixteenth-Century World lies in Wintroub's ability to move with ease between disciplines - historical, philosophical, and literary … Wintroub's erudite book repays careful reading.' Pamela O. Long, Isis

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    Product details

    • Date Published: July 2017
    • format: Hardback
    • isbn: 9781107188235
    • length: 302 pages
    • dimensions: 235 x 157 x 19 mm
    • weight: 0.62kg
    • availability: In stock
  • Table of Contents

    List of figures
    1. Information: pilgrimage in a church of poems
    2. Expertise: the heavens inscribed
    3. Translation: translating the body of thought
    4. Scale: the heart of the matter
    5. Confidence: a balance of trust
    6. Replication: disciplining monsters

  • Author

    Michael Wintroub, University of California, Berkeley
    Michael Wintroub is an Associate Professor at the University of California, Berkeley. He authored A Savage Mirror: Power, Identity and Knowledge in Early Modern France (2005) and has published widely in journals such as the American Historical Review, the British Journal for the History of Science, ISIS, the Renaissance Quarterly, Annales: Histoire, Sciences Sociale, and the Sixteenth Century Journal. Wintroub has received numerous awards and honours, including grants from the National Endowment for the Humanities, the American Council of Learned Societies, the Mellon Foundation, and the Sixteenth Century Society, where he is a two-time winner of the Nancy Lyman Roelker Prize.


    • Winner, 2018 John Pickstone Prize, British Society for the History of Science

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