Scientific Revolution

Call for Papers Special Issue:

Theses on the Scientific Revolution: A Historiographical Reappraisal of the Origins of Modern Science

Transversal: International Journal for the Historiography of Science is pleased to announce a Call for Papers dedicated to the topic “Theses on the Scientific Revolution: a historiographical reappraisal of the origins of modern science”. 

Since the 1930s a whole series of innovations which transformed mechanical arts and natural philosophy of the 16th and 17th century into modern natural sciences was subsumed under the label of “the Scientific Revolution”. The term soon gained considerable popularity due to the works of A. Koyré, H. Butterfield, A. R. Hall, M. Boas Hall and many other historians of early modern science. They tried to provide an account to the Scientific Revolution e. g. in terms of the “mathematization of nature”, the “rise of artisanal knowledge”, or the “influence of the magical perception of reality”.

In the early 1960s, this traditional historiography was further legitimated by the epistemological concept of “scientific revolutions” developed by Th. Kuhn. The Scientific Revolution of the 16th and 17th century became a classic example of scientific change, as it was conceptualized by the author of The Structure of Scientific Revolution. However, in the last decades, the very existence of the Scientific Revolution as a historical phenomenon has been called into question. Some authors argue that this concept was just one way to give an intelligible account to our understanding of scientific development that must itself be historicized.

The main target of this special issue is a re-evaluation of the earlier conceptions that regarded the Scientific Revolution as a key concept for a systematic understanding of modern science as a whole. We would like to put into the focus (re-read and compare) the theses on the Scientific Revolution proposed by authors like Burtt, Koyré, Dijksterhuis, Hessen, Zilsel, Merton, [but also Husserl, Heidegger] and many others who tried to demonstrate the essential role of science in the construction of modernity. These authors offered an image of science as a holistic enterprise that is in many different dimensions connected to metaphysical, social, cultural and economic perspectives. At the same moment, these thinkers understood science as a central and even unifying element of modern culture. Retracing their steps, we would like to answer the question of whether the “scientific revolution” is this still a useful concept to understand modern science and its development.

We are expecting to receive submissions related to these authors or to their reception in subsequent historiography. Comparative analysis between them as well as with other authors is welcome. Our main focus will be the consideration of the philosophical and sociological aspects of the approaches offered by this group of authors, so that articles written from the point of view of philosophy and sociology of science are our main focus. However, we will also consider historical analyses on disciplinary aspects of the “scientific revolution” or on major historical figures as well.

Submission details:

Submission must be received by September 2nd, 2019 via the webpage of the journal so they can be considered for the December 2019 issue.

Submissions must be prepared for double blind review. Notification of acceptance, or refusal or propositions for correction will be sent by October 30th, 2019.

Please, see the Author Guidelines here.

For any further information concerning this Call for Papers please contact:

Daria Drozdova – National Research University Higher School of Economics, Russian Federation


Mauro L. Condé – Federal University of Minas Gerais, Brazil


For any further information concerning this journal please contact the editors-in-chief below:

Mauro L. Condé – Federal University of Minas Gerais, Brazil


Marlon Salomon – Federal University of Goiás, Brazil