Organized by Ramona A. Braun „Hands on Instruments“ brings together international scholars at the University of Cambridge to talk about instrumental practice in twentieth century science.
The conference asks for the „ways in which gestures and hand movements are an important part of creative, analytical and didactic processes in science, medicine and technology, and argues that the human hand has a major impact on research and research-related activities. Gestures are not only considered as ways to support communication through language: hand movements are also creative and teaching devices. Manual practice informs scientific and medical research on every level. This conference explores the importance of hand movements in connection with investigative and analytical thought processes in twentieth century science, medicine and technology. We put special emphasis on the new digital technologies such as screens and robots. We describe the impact of standardized and rationalized hand movements in wrist and finger movements, continuing efforts to document manual practices in history of science focused on earlier centuries.“