American Independent Inventors in an Era of Corporate R&D


Eric Hintz, a historian and fellowship coordinator with the Lemelson Center for the Study of Invention and Innovation at the Smithsonian Institution’s National Museum of American History, talks about his book, American Independent Inventors in an Era of Corporate R&D, with Peoples & Things host, Lee Vinsel. The two discuss why independent inventors are often invisible in histories of 20th century invention and innovation, the role that independent inventors played in the two world wars, and the complicated history of gender and race around invention, which was a path of both promise and risk for women and black people.

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Lee Vinsel

Lee Vinsel is an associate professor in the Department of Science, Technology and Society at Virginia Tech. He studies human life with technology, with particular focus on the relationship between government, business, and technological change. His first book, Moving Violations: Automobiles, Experts, and Regulations in the United States, was published by Johns Hopkins University Press in July 2019.

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