In the late 1500s, the mines of Potosí –a mountain in southern Bolivia — produced 60% of the world’s silver. It was a place of great wealth and terrible suffering. It is also a place, Jorge Canizares-Esguerra
argues, that challenges the very idea of the Scientific Revolution. Canizares-Esguerra discusses Potosí and how its peoples and technologies shaped 16th century science. He is the Alice Drysdale Sheffield Professor of History at the University of Texas at Austin. His work has been honored by awards from the American Historical Association and the History of Science Society. Canizares-Esguerra is the author of (among other books) of Nature, Empire, And Nation: Explorations of the History of Science in the Iberian World
(Stanford University Press, 2006)
Michael F. Robinson is professor of history at Hillyer College, University of Hartford. He's the author of
The Coldest Crucible: Arctic Exploration and American Culture (University of Chicago Press, 2006) and
The Lost White Tribe: Scientists, Explorers, and the Theory that Changed a Continent (Oxford University Press, 2016). He's also the host of the podcast Time to Eat the Dogs, a weekly podcast about science, history, and exploration.