The Material Cultures of Enlightenment Arts and Sciences

  • Adriana Craciun
  • Simon Schaffer

Table of contents

  1. Front Matter
    Pages i-xvi
  2. Adriana Craciun, Simon Schaffer
    Pages 1-11
  3. Natural Curiosities

    1. Front Matter
      Pages 13-13
    2. Mary M. Brooks
      Pages 35-37
    3. Samuel J. M. M. Alberti
      Pages 43-45
    4. Adriana Craciun
      Pages 47-69
  4. Tools and Travels

  5. Artificial Curiosities

    1. Front Matter
      Pages 131-131
    2. Jonathan Lamb
      Pages 133-143
    3. Hannah Williams
      Pages 157-159
    4. Katy Barrett
      Pages 161-163
  6. Exotic Goods

  7. Worlds on Paper

    1. Front Matter
      Pages 233-233
    2. Leanna McLaughlin
      Pages 255-257
    3. Faramerz Dabhoiwala
      Pages 263-265
    4. Billie Lythberg, Maia Nuku, Amiria Salmond
      Pages 267-269
  8. Back Matter
    Pages 291-322

About this book


In this book the eighteenth century Enlightenment receives an important reassessment, using an astonishing range of materials and objects drawn from Europe and beyond, including artefacts from India and China, West Africa and Polynesia. A series of authoritative essays written by experts in the field explores the full range of material culture in the long eighteenth century, raising crucial questions about notions of property and invention, homely and commercial lives. The book also includes a series of well-illustrated exhibits, a startling and provocative assemblage of objects from the Enlightenment world, each accompanied by expert commentaries. The collection of essays and exhibits is the result of collaborative debate by scholars from Europe and north America, who have together worked on the cross-disciplinary importance of material history in making sense of how past society was fundamentally transformed through the world of goods. 


Enlightenment Material culture Consumption Eighteenth-century Property Artefacts

Editors and affiliations

  • Adriana Craciun
    • 1
  • Simon Schaffer
    • 2
  1. 1.University of California Presidential Chair University of California, RiversideRiversideUSA
  2. 2.Professor of History and Philosophy of Science University of CambridgeCambridgeUnited Kingdom

Bibliographic information