Hello and welcome!
We are very excited to begin sharing our research with you through this site. This will be our main way to communicate with you all, keeping you up to date on our work as it develops, the events we are organising and taking part in, while keeping the discussion going through posts and publications.
Elsewhere on this site there is a detailed Introduction to the project aims and ambitions. You can also learn more about who we all are from the Team page, and more on the funding of the project through About. The project was also recently featured in the Viewpoint magazine of the British Society for the History Science.
If you don't want to have to click around (but you really should!!) then a brief introduction below provides a couple of routes into the project. We are hoping to interact with a wide variety of experts on the relations between narrative and science, so one aim of these introductions is to build interest and connections. We would love to hear from you in the comments below, or via email.
What is Narrative Science?
In the course of their activities, scientists often construct and rely upon narratives. Narrative involves ordering materials, an ordering that can be achieved in a variety of ways, be it visually, through diagrams, flowcharts, maps, and the like, or through prose. We can often recognise scientific arguments and practices as adopting or containing narrative structures and elements. What can we learn by subjecting these uses of narratives, their authors, characters and events, to serious scrutiny in order to appreciate the logics and rationales by which scientists’ narratives work? The Narrative Science project explores the philosophical, historical, social, and epistemic functions of narrative in the sciences, and analyses historical cases in which they have been significant.
Another set of questions that we are interested in, are more specifically related to broader questions in the history and philosophy of science. How, for instance, does new knowledge become established, and how do novel categories, ontologies, or epistemologies emerge? What epistemic strategies and tools are available to researchers as they attempt to persuade fellow scientists of the truth of their observations and arguments? What kinds of broader concepts and categories of knowing underpin what counts as successful science? In these respects we are dedicated to finding and demonstrating the ways in which narrative knowing has been central to precisely these kinds of social and epistemic developments throughout the history of the modern sciences.
For more please visit the Introduction.