Breeding, Heredity, and Reproduction

RHN 30/2013 | Event

Organiser: Beat Bächi (Archives of Rural History, Bern)

20-22 March 2013, ZiF - Center for Interdisciplinary Research, Bielefeld University, Germany

Workshop: Breeding, Heredity, and Reproduction.
The Scientisation and Industrialisation of Animals and Plants in the 19th and 20th century

Breeding, heredity, and reproduction are key concepts and practices in the attempted scientification, industrialisation, and commodification of organisms and reproductive substances in the 19th and 20th century. Despite numerous studies focusing genetics, life sciences and 'biopolitics', animals and plants still are marginal research objects in the social sciences and in the humanities. Hardly any attention has been paid to the production and circulation of knowledge and practices regarding animal and plant breeding in academia, industry, and agriculture. None the less, this knowledge and know-how are crucial for our understanding of 'race, blood, and genes'. Therefore, the scientification, mechanisation, and economisation of living substances in farming is to be analysed in this workshop from the point of view of history, sociology, philosophy, and life sciences. By analysing the function of new cultural techniques like statistics and changes in views on objectivity on reproductive theory and practices, the workshop promises to generate new insights into the complex interactions between genetics, breeding science, and agricultural practices.

Click here to download the workshop programme