Science and knowledge: stories without borders?

The practice of history is always part of a given time, place and culture. The history of science and knowledge not being a priori no exception, is it more than ever necessary to question the established narrative?

The idea that modern science is an exclusively European creation would be a myth. This is the thesis defended by the historian of science James Poskett in his book

Copernicus and Newton were not alone”. This idea, undoubtedly questionable, has the merit of re-examining our relationship to the history of science and the history of knowledge, by asking us a simple question: what conception of the history of knowledge and science are we? the heirs ? and what is the place of the non-Western world in the making of these stories?

Science and knowledge: stories without borders?

To tell this story, we are pleased to be accompanied by Antonella Romano, director of studies at the Ecole des Hautes Etudes en Sciences Sociales, member of the Alexandre Koyré Center for the History of Science. We are also with Michael Blayphilosopher and historian of science, honorary director of research at the CNRS, and Charles Frankelgeologist, author of scientific essays and translator of the work of James Poskett “Copernicus and Newton were not alone: ​​what modern science owes to non-European societies” published by Editions du Seuil.

Today’s report

Meeting with Elodie Roblain , in charge of cultural action at the Institute of the Arab World. She describes an astrolabe made in the 15th century in Yemen. By Natacha Demoule.


6 mins

Documentary resources

Find it

thread of the program of the day on the twitter feed of La Science, CQFD.

  • Release :

    Copernicus and Newton were not alone. What Modern Science Owes to Non-European Societies by James Poskett (Threshold, 2022)

  • History of science by Yves Gringas (PUF, 2021)

  • The shadow of Arab science: in the margins of the Copernicus library (The BNU review, 2020)

  • The interweavings of the world. Global history, global thought (CNRS Publishing, 2018)

  • What We Really Owe to the Greeks and Romans (The Cross, 2018)

  • Critique of the history of science (CNRS Publishing, 2018)

  • Impressions of China by Antonia Romanello (Fayard, 2016)

  • Ibn Al Haytham, 11th-century Arab mathematician and physicist (Humanity, 2015)

  • Science and knowledge in motion: historiographic reflections and methodological issues (Diasporas, 2014)

  • Learning mathematics in the Middle Ages: the importance of Arabic-Latin translations (CNRS, 2014)

  • Baghdad in the Middle Ages (Keys to the Middle East, 2012)

  • Matteo Ricci remains in the memory of the Chinese (The Cross, 2010)

  • ”Sight and light: On some aspects of the history of light (Review of History of Science, 2007)

58 mins

musical references

Headline of the day: Einstein’s idea by Johnny Flynn

The opening credits: Goca Dunya by Altin Gun

End credits: pingpxng by Yin Yin References

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