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How Knowledge MovesWriting the Transnational History of Science and Technology$
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John Krige

Print publication date: 2019

Print ISBN-13: 9780226605852

Published to Chicago Scholarship Online: September 2019

DOI: 10.7208/chicago/9780226606040.001.0001

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Introduction: Writing the Transnational History of Science and Technology

Introduction: Writing the Transnational History of Science and Technology

Chapter:
(p.1) Introduction: Writing the Transnational History of Science and Technology
Source:
How Knowledge Moves
Author(s):

John Krige

Publisher:
University of Chicago Press
DOI:10.7208/chicago/9780226606040.003.0001

This introduction provides an intellectual road map for the individual contributions to the volume that are summarized in the latter section. Five themes frame the analyses of the transnational movement of knowledge: the centrality of travel, the role of the regulatory state, the meaning of "borders" and networks, the significance of nationality and political allegiance, and the intersection between the local and the global. By focusing on the practices of state power to police "borders," these themes demolish a widespread assumption that, in a global world, knowledge moves "by itself." The political economy of knowledge production and cross-border movement produces lumpy networks of unevenly distributed power. They are held together by various factors, including the ideology of scientific internationalism, the adoption or imposition of standards that facilitate knowledge exchange (including the increasingly dominant role of English in scientific exchanges) and the principle of reciprocity whereby both members of a dyad benefit, sometimes in quite different ways, from the transnational transaction, including the urge to be "modern." The performance of transnational history in these essays confirms its value as a way of seeing, opening new intellectual and political perspectives on how knowledge moves in an interconnected world that is not "flat."

Keywords:   travel, borders, the regulatory state, nationality, the local and the global, networks, standardization, scientific internationalism, reciprocity, modernity, practice

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