History of Science

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Julia Bloemer, M.Sc.

Work group

Fellow of the "Internationalen Graduierten Kollegs (IGK)" - Religious Cultures in 19th and 20th century Europe

Focus of Research

History of Physics and Academies in the 18th century



Monastic Natural Philosophers in Southern German Enlightenment

The monastery was one of the principle places for doing natural philosophy and natural history in 18th century Southern Germany. Their up to date libraries as well as the comprehensive collection of instruments not only served to instruct novices and laymen, but also was part of an intensive practice of observation. The monastery as a locus of research and the monk as researcher have been largely ignored in studies of Early Modern scholarship. However, precisely here central processes of negotiation can be found: collective work and collaboration in superordinate networks of observation, standardization and transfer of knowledge. The monastic natural philosopher was subject to normative expectations, imposed upon him by the contemporary collective of scholars, which he sought to fulfill within the bounds of his role as monk. Because of this, he had a decisive impact on the development of science in Southern Germany.