Lisa Regazzoni will deliver a Brown Bag Lunch presentation on Monday, March 28 at 12:15 pm. Her talk is entitled “How Can a Gathering of Things Be Transformed into a Scientific Collection? Experimenting with Reinhart Koselleck’s Material Estate.”

Horse figurines made of textile, wood, or glass from different regions of the world, toy soldiers made of pewter, souvenir figurines—for example, of Marx, Atatürk or Mao—and much more: this assortment of seemingly disparate things lay scattered for years on the bookshelves and any free space in the study of Reinhart Koselleck (1923–2006). This lecture will give insight into approaches Regazzoni is experimenting with to transform these objects into a scientific collection with epistemic value. How can new meanings be attributed to these objects, beyond their auratic value, which some might suspect of being the product of a personality cult? What answers can these objects provide to specific research questions? Do they prompt new questions? What is the role of material witnesses and, more generally, of the sensorial in accessing the past?

Lisa Regazzoni is a visiting fellow at BGC this spring. She is professor of theory of history at the University of Bielefeld. She studied philosophy at the Universities of Bologna and Heidelberg and earned a PhD in philosophy at the University of Potsdam in 2006. After several fellowships in Paris (Centre Alexandre Koyré, German Historical Institute Paris, École des hautes études en sciences sociales), in London (German Historical Institute), and Princeton (Institute for Advanced Study), she was appointed professor of modern history at Goethe University in Frankfurt in 2019. Her teaching and research interests include theory and history of historiography from the early modern period, scientific and academic collecting, and the historical epistemology and methodology of history with particular attention to the knowledge potential of materiality and things of the past. She addresses this topic in her most recent book Geschichtsdinge. Gallische Vergangenheit und französische Geschichtsforschung im 18. und frühen 19. Jahrhundert (Things of History: Gallic Past and French Historical Research in the Eighteenth and Early Nineteenth Century), which was published in 2020.

This event will be held via Zoom. A link will be circulated to registrants by 10 am on the day of the event. This event will be live with automatic captions.