John McEvoy

Emeritus

History, Philosophy and Sociology of Science and Technology, Marx, Foucault, Althusser

McMicken Hall

259D

A&S Philos Emeriti - 0374

Professional Summary

Areas of Specialization

John McEvoy works in science studies and political philosophy. He has published extensively on the history and philosophy of science, focusing mainly on the Chemical Revolution, which occurred in the eighteenth century and is generally regarded as the origins of modern chemistry, and twentieth-century interpretations of this important event. He is currently working on more general issues pertaining to the historiography of science and is keen to show how the discipline of the history of science is shaped by wider philosophical and cultural influences. McEvoy also teaches political philosophy, focusing on the classical texts of Marx and Engels and the twentieth-century writings of the Frankfurt School, Foucault, and Althusser. He also teaches courses on the philosophy of technology and the historical and philosophical relations between magic, science, and the occult. His analysis of the 'history of the history of science' since World War Two is available in The Historiography of the Chemical Revolution: Patterns of Interpretation in the History of Science (London: Pickering and Chatto, 2010).

Education

B. Sc. HONS: University of Liverpool Liverpool, UK, 1964 (Chemistry (with high honors))

Postgraduate Certificate in History and Philosophy of Science: Cambridge University Cambridge, UK, 1965 (HPS)

University of Sussex Sussex, UK, (research student, 1965-67)

UNiversity College London, UK, (research student, 1967-70)

PhD: University of Pittsburgh Pittsburgh, PA, 1976 (HPS)

Positions and Work Experience

1965 -1965 Research Assistant, Isis cumulative Critical Bibliography, Imperial College , London

1968 -1969 Physics Instructor, La Sainte Union High School, London

1969 -1970 Lecturer, Department of Humanities, Borough Polytechnic, London

1970 -1972 Assistant Editor, Studies in History and Philosophy of Science,

1970 -1972 Teaching Assistant, Department of History and Philosophy of Science, University of Pittsburgh,

1972 -1978 Assistant Professor , Department of Philosophy, University of Cincinnati,

1979 -1986 Associate Professor, Department of Philosophy, University of Cincinnati,

1986 - Professor, Department of Philosophy, University of Cincinnati,

1984 -1985 Senior Visiting Fellow, Science Studies Group, University of Sussex,

1995 -1996 Academic Degree Committee Representative in Individualized Master of Arts Degree Program, Antioch University,

Research Support

1976 -1977 Charles Taft Research Center, UC Taft Research Fellowship Role:PI

CharlesTaft Research Center, UC Taft Fellowship for Summer Research, 1978, 1981, 1983, 1986, 1987, 1989, 1990, 1993, 1995, 1998

1988 -1988 American Council of Learned Societies Travel Grant

1988 -1988 Council for General Education, UC General Education Grant for Course Restructuring Role:Co-PI

Grant: #04-186 Investigators:Joe Torrence Gray Ohio Humanities Council Grant Role:Consultant

1970 -1971 Social Science Research Council, United Kigdom Social Science Research Conversion Fellowship for Postdoctorates, London School of Economics (declined)

2010 -2010 Charles Taft Research Center, UC Subvention Grant for Indexing of "The Historiography of the Chemical Revolution"

1964 -1968 Science Research Council, UK Science Research Council Grant for Graduate Students

2001 -2001 Charles Taft Research Center, UC Charles P. Taft Memorial Competitive Faculty Fellowship

2007 -2008 Charles Taft Reseach Center, UC Taft Center Research Fellow

Abbreviated Publications

Book

ed. (with A. Truman Schwartz), Motion Toward Perfection: The Achievement of Joseph Priestley (Boston: Skinner House Books, 1975)

The Historiography of the Chemical Revolution: Patterns of Interpretation in the History of Science (London: Pickering and Chatto, 2010)

Book Chapter

(with J. E. McGuire, "God and Nature: Priestley's Way of Rational Dissent," Historical Studies in the Physical Sciences, volume 6, ed. R. McCormmach (Princeton NJ: Princeton University Press, 1975), pp. 325-404

"Causes and Laws, Powers and Principles: The Metaphysical Foundations of Priestley's Concept of Phlogiston," Science, Medicine and Dissent: Joseph Priestley (1733-1804), eds. R.G. Anderson and C. Lawrence (London: Wellcome Trust and Science Museum, 1987), pp. 57-73.

"Continuity and Discontinuity in the Chemical Revolution," Osiris, Volume 4: The Chemical Revolution: Essays in Reinterpretation, ed. A. Donovan (Philadelphia, PA: The History of Science Society, 1988), pp. 195-213.

"The Enlightenment and the Chemical Revolution," Metaphysics and Philosophy of Science in the Seventeenth and Eighteenth Centuries. Essays in Honour of Gerd Buchdahl, ed., R. Woolhouse (Dordrecht: Kluwer Academic Publisher, 1988), pp. 307-25.

(with A. Truman Schwartz), "Introductory Essay: A Brief Biography and Overview of the Anthology," Motion toward Perfection: The Achievement of Joseph Priestley, ed., A. Truman Schwartz and John G. McEvoy (Boston: Skinner House Books, 1990), pp. 

"Joseph Priestley and the Chemical Revolution: A Thematic Overview," Motion Toward Perfection: The Achievement of Joseph Priestley, eds, A. Truman Schwartz and John G. McEvoy (Boston: Skinner House Books, 1990), pp. 129-60.

"Priestley Responds to Lavoisier's Nomenclature: Language, Liberty and Chemistry in the English Enlightenment," Lavoisier in European Context: Negotiating a New Language for Chemistry, B. Bensaude-Vincent and F. Abbri (CAnton, MA: Science History Publications, 1995), pp. 123-42.

"La Pneumatica," Storia della Scienza, ed. S. Petruccioli, 10 vols (Roma: Instituto della Enciclopedia Italiana, 2001-02) vol. 6, pp. 113-21.

Peer Reviewed Publications

Joseph Priestley, Natural Philosopher: Some Comments on Professor Schofield's Views," Ambix, 1968, 15: 115-123.

"A Revolutionary Philosophy of Science: Paul K. Feyerabend and the Degeneration of Critical Rationalism into Skeptical Fallibilism,"  Philosophy of Science (1975), 43: 49-66.

"Joseph Priestley, 'Aerial Philosopher': Metaphysics and Methodology in Priestley's Chemical Thought, Part 1," Ambix (1978), 25: 1-55.

"Joseph Priestley, 'Aerial Philosopher', etc, Part 2," Ambix (1978), 93-117.

"Joseph Priestley, 'Aerial Philosopher', Part 3," Ambix (1978), 153-175.

"Joseph Priestley:'Aerial Philosopher', etc, Part 4," (1979), Ambix, 26: 16-38.

"Electricity, Knowledge and the Nature of Progress in Priestley's Thought," British Journal for the History of Science (1979), 12: 1-30.

"Enlightenment and Dissent in Science: Joseph Priestley and the Limits of Theoretical Reasoning," Enlightenment and Dissent (1983), 2: 47-67.

"Lavoisier, Priestley and the Philosophes: Epistemic and Linguistic Dimensions to the Chemical Revolution," Man and Nature (1989), 8: 91-98.

"Positivism, Whiggism and the Chemical Revolution: A Study in the Historiography of Chemistry," History of Science (1997), 35: 1-33.

"In Search of the Chemical Revolution: Interpretive Patterns in the History of Science," Foundations of Chemistry (2000), 2: 47-73.

"Postpositivist Interpretations of the Chemical Revolution," Canadian Journal of History (2001), 36: 454-469.

"Disciplinary Identity and the Chemical Revolution," Neighbours and Territories: The Evolving Identity of Chemistry (Proceedings of the 6thInternational Conference on the History of Chemistry), eds. José Ramón Bertomeu-Senchez, Duncan Thorburn Burns, et Brigitte Van Tiggelan (Louvain-la-neuve, 2008), 307-317.

Invited Publication

"Essay Review of A. C. Micholas, The Popper-Carnap Controversy," in Studies in the History and Philosophy of Science (1976), 7: 63-85.

"Joseph Priestley, Scientist, Philosopher and Divine," Proceedings of the American Philosophical Society (1984), 128: 193-199.

"Understanding the Copernican Revolution," Teaching Philosophy (1989), 12/2: 145-160.

The Chemical Revolution in Context," The Eighteenth Century: Theory and Interpretation (1992), 33: 195-216.

"Perspectives on Priestley's Science," Enlightenment and Dissent (2000), 19: 60-77.

"Modernism, Postmodernism and the Historiography of Science," Historical Studies in the Physical and Biological Sciences (2007), 37/2: 385-410.

"Priestley and Lavoisier: Essay Review of Robert E. Schofield, The Enlightened Joseph Priestleyamd M. Beretta (ed.), Lavoisier in Perspective," Annals of Science 64:595-605.

Other Publication

"Letter to the Editor," Isis (1991), 82 89-90.

"Welcome to Cincinnati," History of Science Society Newsletter (1988), 17: 1-2 (HSS Annual General Meeting, 1988).

Encyclopedia Article

"Joseph Priestley," The Encyclopedia of the Enlightenment, ed. Alan C. Kors, 4 vols (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2002), 3: 361-364.

"Pneumatics," The Encyclopedia of the Enlightenment, ed. Alan C. Kors, 4 vols (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2002), 3: 296-298.

"Heat," The Encyclopedia of the Enlightenment, ed. Alan C. Kors, 4 vols (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2002), 2: 199-201.

"David MacBride," The New Dictionary of National Biography, 60 vols (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2004), 35: 67.

"Joseph Priestley,” Encyclopedia of Utilitarianism, ed., James E. Crimmins  (New York: Continuum Publishers, forthcoming)

"Joseph Priestley (1733-1804),” Encyclopedia Britannica, 2005. Encyclopedia Britannica Premium Service, http://www.britannica.com/eb/article/tocld=218490.
To read the page with Estonian translation by Anna Galovich,
    http://webhostinggeeks.com/science/britannica-topic-et

 

Review

R. E. Schofield, A Scientific Autobiography of Joseph Priestley, in Archives Internationale d'Histoire des Sciences, (1968), 84: 330-331.

J. Lindsay, ed., Autobiography of Joseph Priestley Written by Himself, in Ambix, (1972), 19: 222-223.

Barry Hindess, Philosophy and Methodology in the Social Sciences, in Philosophy of Science (1979), 46: 496-499.

M. A. Stewart, ed., Selected Papers of Robert Boyle, in Teaching Philosophy (1981), 4: 193-194.

Erwin N. Hiebert, Aaron J. Ihde and Robert E. Schofield, Joseph Priestley: Scientist, Theologian and Metaphysician, ed. Lester Kleft and Bennett R. Wildord, Jr., in Isis (1981), 72: 322-323.

Brian Easlea, Witch-hunting, Magic, and the New Philosophy, in Teaching Philosophy (1984), 7: 66-70.

R. Blackwell, Bibliography of the Philosophy of Science, 1945-1981, in Teaching Philosophy (1985), 7: 272-273.

Oxygen and the Conversion of Future Foodstocks: Third BOC Priestley Conference. The Royal Society of Chemistry Communications No. 48, in Enlightenment and Dissent (1985), 4: 119-121.

T. L. Hankins, Science and the Enlightenment, in Annals of Science (1986), 43: 563-564.

Nancy J. Nersessian, ed., The Process of Science: Contemporary Philosophical Approaches to Understanding Scientific Practice, in Isis (1988), 79: 139-140.

Frederick L. Holmes, Eighteenth-Century Chemistry as an Investigative Enterprise, in Isis (1991), 82: 382.

Helene Metzger, Chemistry, trans and annotated by Collette V. Michael; forward by J. Ihde, in Isis (1993), 84: 128-129.

David Knight, Ideas in Chemistry: A History of the Science, in Isis (1993), 84: 549.

William H. Brock, The Fontana History of Chemistry, in  British Journal for the History of Science (1993), 26: 352-353.

Jan Y. Golinski, Science as Public Culture: Chemistry and Enlightenment in Britain 1760-1820 in American Scientist (1993), 81: 602.

Evan Melhado and Torre Frangsmyr, ed., Enlightenment Science in the Romantic Era: The Chemistry of Berzelius and its Cultural Setting in Isis (1994), 85: 522-523.

Marco Beretta, The Enlightenment of Matter: The Definition of Chemistry from Agricola to Lavoisier in British Journal for the History of Science (1995), 28: 109-111.

Karl Popper, The Myth of the Framework: In Defense of Science and Rationality, ed. M. A. Notturno in Teaching Philosophy (1995), 18/4: 388-389.

Robert Schofield, The Enlightenment of Joseph Priestley: A Study of His Life and Work from 1733-1773 in The Canadian Journal of History (1999), 34: 109-110.

David Philip , in Discovering Water: James Watt, Henry Cavendish and the Nineteenth-Century Water Controversy in Annals of Science (2005), 62: 392-394.

Frederick L. Holmes, Investigative Pathways: Patterns and Stages in the Careers of Experimental Scientists in Isis (2005), 96: 260-261.

Richard L. Hills, James Watt, 3 vols, in Isis (2007), 98: 834-836.

Keywords

John McEvoy works in science studies and political philosophy. He has published extensively on the history and philosophy of science, focusing mainly on the Chemical Revolution, which occurred in the eighteenth century and is generally regarded as the ori