Reading Group

Troubling Epistemics and Postcolonialisms

11:00 - 13:30 Uhr
Max Planck Institute for the History of Science, Boltzmannstraße 22, 14195 Berlin, Germany

“Troubling Epistemics and Postcolonialism” is a monthly reading seminar interrogating "postcolonial" as an analytic concept in the history of science. The goal is to understand the ethics and mechanisms of our own epistemic practices as they relate to politics and power. We aim to examine the ways that epistemology is both historically contingent and actively produced within the history of science with the goal of troubling our disciplinary positions. For each meeting we list and circulate

  1. a short ‘provocative text’ to carry the empirical element and to provoke us to go wider in attempting to attend to something that troubles. Everyone is expected to read that text
  2. two or three "theoretical" or descriptive papers that we feel might be useful in "attending to the trouble." These are optional readings. The idea is that everyone who attends the discussion will have read at least the short provocation paper and bring some "troubles" to the meeting

The group is open to all. If you are an external guest, please register by sending an email to Marianna Szczygielska at

In this session we will discuss the following texts dedicated to the topic of containment that will be briefly introduced by Baldeep Kaur Grewal (Potsdam University’s “Minor Cosmopolitanisms” RTG): Provocation text

  • Martina Schlünder. 2020. "The Generative Possibilities of the Wrong Box” in: Boxes: A Field Guide (eds.) S. Bauer, M. Schlünder, M. Rentetzi, Mattering Press, pp. 29-36. 

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