UAM – Department of Modern History


Eva Botella & Beatriz Pichel in collaboration with Iris Rodríguez Alcaide.

  1. Comparative Study of the history of biometrics and emotions:
    1870-2014. A comparative approach – UAM – Eva Botella & De Montfor University Leicester – Beatriz Pichel.

    SUMMARY: The beginning of photography and specially cinema, the movement of nature studies, the theory of evolution, eugenics, psychology, anthropology and biometrics were related disciplines in creation around 1870s.While current media studies, biology, eugenics, psychology, emotional studies and biometrics have technologically changed much since then, we would like to explore: 1. In which sense there have been changes. 2.The historical and philosophical bases of both the emergence of this paradigm and such changes. 3. The way in which the nascent disciplines affected everyday practices and how they constructed the body by means of captures, as well as its effects in the general population and their cultural experiences and practices. 4. The same thing in relation to nowadays practices. 5. The identification of historical cases that resisted the standardization of these gestures and proposed alternative interpretations in order to recognize what these disciplines cannot measure and the scientific, philosophical and historical consequences. 6. The consequences for the general population.

    (paper in working process)
    Eva Botella Ordinas in collaboration with Iris Rodríguez Alcaide

    SUMMARY: Analyses late nineteenth century human and animal comparative psychology and criminology, the fixation of species and genera, and their relation with the standard of civilization and social control, affecting the conception of international order and scientific research. The main focus of this study is the “social species” (insects and humans), through the materials used remarkable scientists of the time, such as Galton, Darwin, Forel, Evans, Lombroso. Nowadays research on so called “complex systems” ants and neural systems are compared, and the comparison remains essential for the concept of “emergence”. We would like to open the question for discussion about the role of “data” in these processes and in research.

  2. Civilizing process and nature studies.
    The sciences, the environment, humanimals, and identity fixation.
    PDF CASE-STUDYSUMMARY: Sciences had been affected by political and social conceptions. During the last years of the XIX century some of them, such as biology, medicine, psychology, anthropology, neurosciences, nature studies, pedagogy, photography, show a shift, if not a dramatic change in light of new inventions-creations and new perceptions of beings, time and space. These changes are in the basis of how we perceive the world and how we relate to-within-it in every sense. The research will deal with many of the METABODY topics through Legal history (concepts of responsibility, agency or sustainability), history of science and cognition (illegible affects, embodiment, tech, in-motion, cognition, agency, synesthesia, emergence), history of culture (unexpected, mediation, change), and philosophy.IFM 2013

    (paper in working process)

    REASON´S PERFORMANCES deals with the concept of the subject of the measures, in relation to both the cultural background of its creation and to the performativity requirements. It is centered in the study of John Locke: considered either a founder or a crucial contributor to disciplines as diverse as psychology, economics, education, political science, language studies or philosophy. The Enlightened descriptions of the universal rational and conscious subject required kinetic performances and construction was deeply embodied. He was shaped by cultural emotions such as disgust or pleasure, cruelty or humanity, modelled by performativity, gestural and kinetic practices, fixing the standards of normality, capabilities and civilization status. His late reception and relevance makes this analysis crucial, and one of its aims is to open an inter-trans-metadisciplinary discussion on the kinetics of reason, including “reaction time”.

  3. Loïe Fuller as Dancescientist
    – UAM – Eva Botella
    – De Montfor University Leicester – Beatriz Pichel
    Study of Loïe Fuller as example of transdisciplinary researcher-creator bridging dance and sciences.

    During the XX Century disciplines created a divide not only between humanities‐philosophy and science, but between science and art, andwith it a separation between creation and discovery, related to two binaries, and four concepts: body‐mind and facts‐invention. We would like to explore the historical, philosophical, kinetic, mass‐media and scientific path from the last quarter of the XIX century to our days, to understand the changes that happened in relation to this divide. A central figure is Loie Fuller, because she was both a scientist and an artist, friend of scientists, artists and humanists. Not only that: she was both a woman and a lesbian. Her scientific career is not covered probably due to all these circumstances, resulting in the remembering of Loie Fuller only as a precursor of contemporary dance performance. On the contrary, this project will interpret Fuller’s dance as an artistic response to questions that were supposed to belong to scientific disciplines.Eva y Beatriz