The conference will explore the rich collision of fact and fiction that takes place within the concepts, practices, and histories of science and technology. We will showcase a range of disciplinary perspectives--from experimental psychology to early modern literature--that cut across the "two-culture" divide to revel in the hybridity of scientific and narrative modes of thought.
9:30: Opening Remarks by Michael McKeon
9:40 - 10:50 : Keynote Address, Rosalind Williams, MIT, History of Sciene - "Engineering Fiction"
Introduced by Ann Fabian
11:00-12:30: Panel 1, "Cultures of Science and Fiction"
Moderator: Rachael Nichols (Skidmore)
- 1. Fantastic Scholarship: Negotiating Fact and Fiction in Victorian Britain - Mimi Winick, Rutgers University, English
- 2. Who Killed Science Fiction? A Case Study of a Genre Form in Transition - David Reinecke, Princeton University, Sociology
- 3. The Soft Machine: The Linguistic Anthropology of Science Fiction in the Mid Twentieth Century - Edgar Garcia, Yale University, English
- 4. A Feminist Mary Sue?: Star Trek Female Fanfiction as Autoethnographic Performance - Andrea Marshall, Drexel University, Information Studies
12:30-1:30: Lunch - location T.B.A.
1:30-2:50: Panel 2, "Imagination in Explanation"
Moderator: Brian McLaughlin (Rutgers)
- 1. Imagining Possibilities: Pretend Play and Causal Inference - Caren Walker, Berkeley, Psychology
- 2. Continuum-Hypothetical Explanatory Pluralism - Guilherme Sanches de Oliveira, University of Sao Paulo, Philosophy
- 3. Streams of Consciousness: From Science To Fiction - Henry M. Cowles, Princeton University, History of Science; Dora Zhang, Princeton University, Comparative Literature
- 4. Stories We Tell About Science: Truths, Half-Truths, and Convenient Fictions - Kamili M. Posey, CUNY Graduate Center, Philosophy
3:00-4:20: Panel 3, "Possible Worlds, New Histories"
Moderator: Andy Parker (Rutgers)
- 1. "I Did Not Even Exist!": Textual Culture and Alternate Histories in Stevenson's Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde - Adrian Versteegh, NYU, English
- 2. Fledgling Futures of Color: The Audacity of Octavia Butler's Racial Imagination - Liamog Drislane, Montclair State University, English
- 3. One Small Step For Man, One Giant Leap For Fiction: Science Fiction as a Tool for Scientific Inquiry in 17th Century France - Cybele Arnaud, University of Maryland, French
4:30 - 5:30: Closing Roundtable Discussion
Moderator: Michael McKeon
Panelists: Erin Kelly, A.J. Blandford, Debapriya Sarkar, Michael Hicks
5:30: Reception and Dinner at Center for Cultural Analysis
Sponsored by the Rutgers British Studies Center, the Rutgers Graduate Student Association, the Program in History of Science, Technology, Engineering, and Health, and the Center for Cultural Analysis