|Post:||Reader in the History of Science (History)|
|Location:||Arts A A166|
|International:||+44 1273 678005|
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I am a specialist in the history of science, with particular interest in the impact of empire on nineteenth-century Britain, science and literature, and in the reception and influence of Darwinism. I am interested in hearing from prospective postgraduate students with interests in any area of Victorian British history, particularly the history of the sciences, or in the early/mid-twentieth century life sciences, particularly their social and cultural impacts.
During 2010, I was a Distinguished International Scholar and visiting professor in the Department of History and Sociology of Science at the University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, USA.
My first book, A Guinea Pig's History of Biology (2007), won the Royal Society of Literature's Jerwood Prize and was longlisted for the Guardian First Book Award. It has been published in hardback and paperback in the UK and USA, and a Spanish translation was published in 2009 and a German translation appeared in October 2012. My second, Imperial Nature: Joseph Hooker and the practices of Victorian Science (2008), was published by the University of Chicago Press and appeared in paperback in 2010. I edited a new edition of Darwin's On the Origin of Species that was published by Cambridge University Press in May 2009.
I am currently writing a cultural history of the Orchid for Reaktion books and will then write a history of imperial science and classification for Atlantic Books (UK) that will be published by Metropolitan Books (Henry Holt & Company) in the US. Tentatively called A Place for Everything: how science and empire ordered the world, it will explore the connections between science and empire during Coleridge's "Second Scientific Revolution", by looking at the ways new sciences were shaped by new classifications.
My next research project will involve a comparative study of Anglo-American biology in the early twentieth century, looking at the ways in which the broad social and cultural impacts of new biological discoveries functioned to shape the public sphere.
I did my first degree in History and Philosophy of Science at the University of New South Wales, followed by an MPhil and PhD in the HPS Department at Cambridge, after which I was a post-doctoral research fellow at Darwin College, Cambridge. I joined Sussex in 2007, was promoted to senior lecturer in 2009 and to Reader in the History of Science in 2013.
History of the 19th and 20th-century life sciences, especially natural history museums and botanic gardens; Joseph Dalton Hooker; history of taxonomy and classification; Charles Darwin, evolution and related issues; development of twentieth-century evolutionary biology; history and sociology of experimental organisms; Constantine Samuel Rafinesque; Orchids; Hugo de Vries, the Mutation Theory and Oenothera Lamarckiana.
Because I am currently Director of Teaching and Learning for the School of HAHP, I am only teaching the following courses:
Special Subject: The Century of the Gene
At the beginning of the twentieth century, no-one knew anything about genetics (the word itself had yet to be coined), yet by the century’s end, you could buy cheap, do-it-yourself genetic tests on the internet. This course investigates the ways in which advances in scientific knowledge has affected our sense of ourselves, so that the very phrase ‘human nature’ has increasingly come to mean something fixed by our genes. The language of genetics has had a powerful effect on political discourse; the eugenic ideal of creating a superior type of human was supposed to have died with Hitler, yet seems to live on in routine genetic testing and screening, and in the fantasy of ‘designer babies’. The idea of a genetic blueprint, and of being able to read – and perhaps to edit and re-write – the DNA ‘code’, has shaped popular culture, from television and cinema to novels and computer games. This course examines a broad and diverse range of primary sources – from accessible scientific texts to comic books and movies – looking at ideas like cloning, ‘designer babies’, mutation and genetic engineering – to understand the ways in which genetics became the defining science of the twentieth century, a science that has reshaped the world we live in.
Time and Place: 1851, Science, Empire and Exhibitionism
In 1851, the census results revealed that Britain's population stood at about 20 million, having more than doubled in the first half of the century. But what was more astonishing was that the majority of the British people now lived in towns and cities. At mid-century, Britons were living in what one contemporary observer called 'the age of great cities'.
This course will examine life in Victorian town and cities by using contemporary poetry, novels and journalism to analyse people's experiences of modernity. The Great Exhibition at the Crystal Palace was, in many ways, an exhibition of the things the Victorians perceived as having changed their world, from cheap, manufactured consumer goods, to the latest scientific discoveries and devices, and above all the wealth of the expanding empire.
The sciences and technologies that were exhibited in 1851, and which made the exhibition itself possible, are central topics for this course. However, the Exhibition put the Victorians themselves on display, allowing large crowds from diverse classes to meet in public and celebrate their sense of themselves as a unified, modern nation. This course will subject the Victorians' self-congratulatory sense of themselves to close critical scrutiny.
I also lecture on the first-year survey courses, the Early Modern World and The Modern World.
Endersby, Jim (2013) Mutant utopias: evening primroses and imagined futures in early-twentieth-century America. Isis, 104 (3). pp. 471-503. ISSN 00211753
Griggs, Pat and Endersby, Jim (2012) Joseph Hooker : Botanical Trailblazer. Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew, Richmond, Surrey, UK. ISBN 9781842464694
Griggs, Pat and Endersby, Jim (2011) Joseph Hooker: botanical trailblazer. Kew Publishing, Richmond. ISBN 9781842464694
Endersby, Jim (2011) A Life More Ordinary: The Dull Life but Interesting Times of Joseph Dalton Hooker. Journal of the History of Biology, 44 (4). pp. 611-631. ISSN 0022-5010
Endersby, Jim (2009) Lumpers and splitters: Darwin, Hooker, and the search for order. Science, 326 (5959). pp. 1496-1499. ISSN 0036-8075
Endersby, Jim (2009) Sympathetic science: Charles Darwin, Joseph Hooker and the passions of Victorian naturalists. Victorian Studies, 51 (2). pp. 299-320. ISSN 0042-5222
Endersby, Jim (2009) 'The vagaries of a Rafinesque': imagining and classifying American nature. Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part C: Studies in History and Philosophy of Biological and Biomedical Sciences, 40 (3). pp. 168-178. ISSN 1369-8486
Endersby, Jim (2009) Una historia de la biología según el conejillo de Indias: Las plantas y los animales que nos han enseñado a entender la vida. Editorial Ariel. ISBN 9788434488144
Endersby, Jim, ed. (2009) Charles Darwin: On the Origin of Species. Cambridge University Press, Cambridge; New York. ISBN 9780521867092
Endersby, Jim (2009) Darwin on generation, pangenesis and sexual selection. In: Cambridge companion to Darwin. Cambridge companions to philosophy . Cambridge University Press, pp. 69-91. ISBN 9780521777308
Endersby, Jim (2009) A Gunn and two Hookers: friendships that shaped science. In: In the wake of the "Beagle": science in the southern oceans from the age of Darwin. UNSW Press, pp. 74-87. ISBN 9781921410949
Endersby, Dr Jim, ed. (2009) On the Origin of Species. Cambridge University Press. ISBN 9780521867092
Endersby, Jim (2008) Imperial nature: Joseph Hooker and the practices of Victorian science. University of Chicage Press. ISBN 9780226207919
Endersby, Jim (2008) Joseph Hooker: a philosophical botanist. Journal of Biosciences, 33 (2). pp. 163-169. ISSN 0250-5991
Endersby, Jim (2005) Classifying sciences: Systematics and status in mid-Victorian natural history. In: The organisation of knowledge in Victorian Britain. British Academy centenary monographs . Oxford University Press, pp. 61-85. ISBN 9780197263266
Endersby, Jim (2001) 'From having no herbarium.' Local knowledge versus metropolitan expertise: Joseph Hooker's Australasian correspondence with William Colenso and Ronald Gunn. Pacific Science, 55 (4). pp. 343-358. ISSN 0030-8870
Endersby, Jim (2001) 'The realm of hard evidence': novelty, persuasion and collaboration in botanical cladistics. Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part C: Studies in History and Philosophy of Biological and Biomedical Sciences, 32 (2). pp. 343-360. ISSN 1369-8486
Endersby, Jim (2001) A guinea pig's history of biology: the plants and animals who taught us the facts of life. Arrow. ISBN 9780099471240
Endersby, Jim (2000) A garden enclosed: botanical barter in Sydney, 1818-39. British Journal of the History of Science, 33 (3). pp. 313-334. ISSN 0007-0874
Endersby, Jim (1997) The evolving museum. Public Understanding of Science, 6 (2). pp. 185-206. ISSN 0963-6625
- Tuesday 14:00-15:00 (Please email for an appointment if you cannot come at this time)
- Friday 12:00-13:00 (Please email for an appointment if you cannot come at this time)