Item description for Masons, Tricksters and Cartographers: Comparative Studies in the Sociology of Scientific and Indigenous Knowledge (Studies in the History of Science, Technology & Medicine) by David Turnbull...
Science and technology have created many of the problems besetting us at the turn of the century, yet, paradoxically, we cannot address them without their assistance. This beautifully illustrated book takes a fresh approach to resolving the problems of progress and modernity by reframing science and technology. In an eclectic and highly original study, Turnbull brings together a wide range of traditions as diverse as cathedral building, Micronesian navigation, cartography and turbulence research. He argues that all our differing ways of producing knowledge, including science, are messy, spatial and local. Every culture has its own ways of assembling local knowledge, thereby creating space through the linking of people, practices and places. The spaces we inhabit and assemblages we work with are not as homogeneous and coherent as our modernist perspectives have led us to believe-rather they are complex and heterogeneous motleys.
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Studio: Taylor & Francis
Est. Packaging Dimensions: Length: 0.5" Width: 5.75" Height: 8.75" Weight: 1.15 lbs.
Release Date Aug 1, 2000
Publisher Taylor & Francis
ISBN 9058230015 ISBN13 9789058230010
Reviews - What do customers think about Masons, Tricksters and Cartographers: Comparative Studies in the Sociology of Scientific and Indigenous Knowledge (Studies in the History of Science, Technology & Medicine)?
Amazing Jan 18, 2007
I knew D Turnbull by reading John Law's work. Turnbull's work encompasses quite of an eclectic array of case studies (ranging from Gothic cathedral building knowledge transference to Micronesian navigation or the 'art/science' of the cartographers) where he analyses knowledge production and the intricacies to transfer (by transforming) such knowledge. I really recommend this book.
the shape of twentyfirst century thinking Jan 31, 2002
Professor Turnbull's particular speciality is the Sociology of Scientific Knowledge. This is a controversial field, since some argue that science (Western techno-Science) is objective truth itself and therefore can not be a subject for sociology whose subject is people.
Turnbull shows that knowledge systems are always local human constructs. Masons building cathedrals without blueprints, Australian aborigines navigating across a trackless land through the dream-time, and western scientists engaged in turbulence research are a few of the examples of what he calls "knowledge spaces."
While this is a textbook-and a very radical and bold one at that-Turnbull is a very clear writer. This isn't jargon wars, and the material presented is truly fascinating.
David Turnbull evidently hails from down under. His excellent 1993 work "Maps are Territories: Science Is an Atlas" is available to us on this site.com thanks to the University of Chicago Press. (This book, with its beautiful "Fool's Cap" world map, is from Holland).
Turnbull argues for the validity and worth of all knowledge systems. We need science to deal with the problems science itself has created (nuclear waste, for example), but we need diversity of approach to deal with local problems and to understand what approaches other knowledge systems employ. Turnbull's examination of malaria vaccine research best demonstrates these issues.
It's hard to stay calm while writing this review 'cause the book was just so exciting. Reading "Maps Are Territories..." might prepare the cartographically inclined for this witty and way deep book.
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