Hannah Star Rogers, "Routledge Handbook of Art, Science, and Technology Studies" (Routledge, 2021))


I spoke with Hannah Star Rogers, one of the editors of the Routledge Handbook of Art, Science, and Technology Studies (Routledge, 2021). Art and science work is experiencing a dramatic rise coincident with burgeoning Science and Technology Studies (STS) interest in this area. Science has played the role of muse for the arts, inspiring imaginative reconfigurations of scientific themes and exploring their cultural resonance. Conversely, the arts are often deployed in the service of science communication, illustration, and popularization. STS scholars have sought to resist the instrumentalization of the arts by the sciences, emphasizing studies of theories and practices across disciplines and the distinctive and complementary contributions of each. The manifestation of this commonality of creative and epistemic practices is the emergence of Art, Science, and Technology Studies (ASTS) as the interdisciplinary exploration of art–science.

This handbook defines the modes, practices, crucial literature, and research interests of this emerging field. It explores the questions, methodologies, and theoretical implications of scholarship and practice that arise at the intersection of art and STS. Further, ASTS demonstrates how the arts are intervening in STS. Drawing on methods and concepts derived from STS and allied fields including visual studies, performance studies, design studies, science communication, and aesthetics, and the knowledge of practicing artists and curators, ASTS is predicated on the capacity to see both art and science as constructions of human knowledge-making. Accordingly, it posits a new analytical vernacular, enabling new ways of seeing, understanding, and thinking critically about the world.

This book provides scholars and practitioners already familiar with the themes and tensions of art–science with a means of connecting across disciplines. It proposes organizing principles for thinking about art–science across the sciences, social sciences, humanities, and arts. Encounters with art and science become meaningful in relation to practices and materials manifest as perceptual habits, background knowledge, and cultural norms. As the chapters in this book demonstrate, a variety of STS tools can be brought to bear on art–science so that systematic research can be conducted on this unique set of knowledge-making practices.

Hannah Star Rogers is Visiting Scholar at the University of Edinburgh in Science, Technology, and Innovation Studies (STIS) and lead editor of the Routledge Handbook of Art, Science, and Technology Studies.

Frances Sacks is a journalist and graduate of Wesleyan University, where she studied in the Science and Society Program. She is also a drummer who has studied Gamelan in Bali, Berber in Morocco, and most traditional Ga patterns with master drummers in Ghana.

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Frances Sacks

Frances Sacks is a graduate of Wesleyan University where she studied in the Science and Society Program.

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