** your contributions make the new style of sociable scholarship possible **
First Published: February 2012
Revised (substantive): 28 November 2015
Use Thy Gifts Rightly.
— Cornelis Drebbel (1572–1633)
This motto was inscribed, along with Drebbel’s monogram, on his many instruments and inventions, ranging from: a perpetual-motion machine “representing the motion of the Heavens about the fixed earth,” air conditioning, an incubator, the thermometer, “an instrument to sink ships,” the first microscope, and several different types of camera; to the first sea-worthy submarine, which in 1620 traveled down the Thames from Westminster to Greenwich under the surface of the water, with an 8-person crew and 12 passengers kept alive by Drebbel’s mysterious on-board manufacture of breathable air, 150 years before the “discovery” of oxygen in the early 1770s.
Invest in the new Sociable Scholarship!
E-scholarship is costly and needs financial support, as does the sort of scholarship funded by more traditional institutions of patronage (in the past, wealthy princes, aristocrats and burghers; today, universities, government funding agencies, R&D firms, well-endowed “think-tanks” and private foundations).
As a thoroughly independent, risky, and unpredictable venture that continues to challenge established academic practices, She-philosopher.com has no such patrons to solicit. Nor do I have an academic salary to fall back on, or any of the usual perquisites (like paid sabbatical leave) that come with this. Rather, I must fund my own postdoctoral research projects, and I donate everything — not just my scholarship, but also my services as designer, author, editor, and publisher, plus all “tech support” — that is needed for website development.
In so doing, I rely on the growing network of supporters who are willing to share with me their own research, expertise, and best practices, thus contributing to the informal scholarly dialogue on which this site depends.
The result is a new kind of sociable scholarship, conducted in the spirit of the “gift economy” which flourishes on the Internet.
Given this mission, She-philosopher.com will continue to make the highest quality scholarly work freely available — in hopes, but with no requirement, of reciprocity. If you value the site’s resources, and can afford to make even a small donation to the cause of independent and visionary e-scholarship, I encourage you to do so.
We make it easy & safe to donate online using PayPal (just click/tap on the icon directly above). You can pay by credit card or debit card, or use your PayPal account.
P O S T C R I P T
Some final comments on the evolving genres of scholarly publication, since I continue to be contacted by those searching for a list of my print publications.
The short answer is: there aren’t any (other than my doctoral dissertation, published by University Microfilms International, as is required for a PhD).
I have chosen not to follow the traditional publication route (printed monographs and articles in peer-reviewed journals, written for an ever-shrinking audience of like-minded scholars), and because I don’t have an academic career, I’m able to get away with this. Nonetheless, I’m still governed by the institutional dictum of “publish or perish,” which takes on yet a new cluster of meanings in the dynamic world of online publication, where scholarship must compete with all the edutainment out there, and yet still survive prolonged immersion in what a mainstream-media reporter once called “the acid bath of peer review.”
When I launched She-philosopher.com — a Web-based research project specializing in the history of science, technology & culture during the early-modern period (sometimes known as the “long” 17th century, because it extends several decades into both the 16th and 18th centuries) — it was in hopes of opening new dialogues between past & present, between academic and non-academic audiences. This remains a work in progress, but thus far, I’m quite pleased with the results. I am doing the best scholarship I have ever done, and find that the quality of peer review within the online community is unsurpassed.
Over the years (She-philosopher.com officially launched in March–April 2004), I have built a website rich with content, including archival data, images, maps, and digital transcriptions of period writings by women and men, plus scholarly monographs and interpretations not available anywhere else. I have eclectic research interests (everything from feminist science studies to the history of printing and other trades, including masonry, agriculture, medicine and pharmacy; from studies in rhetoric and symbolism, to the history of taxonomies, information design, and the evolution of the modern flow chart). And I am committed to making the highest quality scholarship on such matters available not just to teachers and students, but also to modern professionals — across the arts & sciences — and to anyone else with an interest and stake in the historical research. Your donation will support me, and all those who use the resources of She-philosopher.com, in this independent inquiry into our past & present.
So let me make one last funding appeal: to all those who willingly would have purchased a printed book of mine, how about donating whatever you would have paid for such a book to She-philosopher.com instead?
If we are to keep up the creative dialogue, all of us who benefit from free & open access to Web-based scholarly resources must figure out new — and sustainable — ways to support and fund this.
Because I am passionately committed to academic excellence, integrity & independence in research, She-philosopher.com does not accept any paid advertising. I prefer to ask the growing network of She-philosopher.com visitors to contribute & support this website’s vision for 21st-century e-scholarship.
Donate $10 / $20 / $35 / $50 (or whatever you can) today!
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