, Volume 20, Issue 2, pp 321-324

Stepping-up the historiography of peripheral popularisation

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A group of scholars from the Mediterranean and Scandinavian fringes of Europe have been holding meetings and conferences on the theme of ‘Science and Technology in the European Periphery’ for the last 10 years. The most recent meeting, in June 2010, demonstrated the continuing and widening appeal of the theme of peripherality (despite its obvious, and much-rehearsed, problems), with participants from Mexico, Brazil, Israel and Russia joining the group. The volume under review emerged from a 2006 meeting devoted to popularisation, a topic which—along with education and textbooks—seems likely to be of particular relevance to the historiography of science in ‘peripheral’ countries. Such countries as Spain, Portugal, Denmark, Sweden and Hungary cannot claim the same contributions to modern science as can France, Germany, Britain and the USA and their historians have often been tempted to produce hagiographic accounts of overlooked heroes in an effort to establish a national scientific heri