Dr Matthew Daniel Eddy, BA, MA, PhD
Mondays, 2:00-3:00. Tuesdays, 1:00-3:00.
Based in Durham University’s Department of Philosophy, I am the university's Reader in the History and Philosophy of Science and a member of its Centre for Visual Arts and Culture. Trained in England, America and Germany, I am an intellectual historian with special interests in the history of science and its relationship to the conceptualisation of art, reason and human nature in modern Europe.
In all my work I treat scientific concepts as entities that emerge, flourish and recede over time based on their historical context - an approach that embraces two related historical methods called 'historical epistemology' and 'historical ontology'. Over the course of my career I have published on topics relevant to the history of a number of disciplines in the human, environmental and social sciences. My work on several of these topics was recently profiled in the American magazine Inside Higher Ed and by the Max Planck Institute for the History of Science.
I’ve worked at Princeton, Harvard, MIT, UCLA, the Max Planck Institute for the History of Science (Berlin) and Caltech. My research has been supported through grants or fellowships awarded by the British Arts and Humanities Research Council, the Royal Society of London, the Wellcome Trust, the Mellon Foundation and Durham’s Institute for Advanced Study. At present I am completing a book that reveals the rich relationship between rationality and the visual arts during the Enlightenment.
In addition to serving on the executive councils for the British Society for the History of Science and the Society for the History of Alchemy and Chemistry, I've given evidence for a number of British government organisations (including the Department of Work and Pensions) and I served as an assessor for the National Research Exercise coordinated for the Greek Ministry of Education.
I supervise theses and dissertations on all aspects of the 18th- to early 20th-century intellectual history topics outlined above.
- History and Philosophy of Science and Medicine
- History of Philosophy
- Mind, Language and Metaphysics
- History and Philosophy Science (especially environmental science)
- History of Objectivity
- The History of Knowledge
- The Scottish Enlightenment
- Darwinism and Childhood
- Science and the Visual Arts, 1750-present
- Eddy, M. (2008). The Language of Mineralogy: John Walker, Chemistry and the Edinburgh Medical School, 1750-1800. Aldershot: Ashgate.
- Eddy, M. (2004). Fallible or inerrant? A belated review of the ‘constructivist's bible’. British Journal for the History of Science 37(01): 93-98.
Chapter in book
- Eddy, Matthew (2015). Useful Pictures: Joseph Black and the Graphic Culture of Experimentation. In Cradle of Chemistry: The Early Years of Chemistry at the University of Edinburgh. Anderson, Robert G. W. Edinburgh: John Donald. 99-118.
- Eddy, M. (2013). Nineteenth-Century Natural Theology. In The Oxford Handbook of Natural Theology. Russell Re Manning Oxford: Oxford University Press. 100-117.
- Eddy, M. (2010). Natural History, Natural Philosophy and Readership. In The Edinburgh History of the Book in Scotland, Vol II: Enlightenment and Expansion, 1707-1800. Brown, S. & McDougall, W. Edinburgh: University of Edinburgh Press.
- Eddy, M. (2010). The Sparkling Nectar of Spas; or, Mineral Water as a Medically Commodifiable Material in the Province, 1770–1805. In Materials and Expertise in Early Modern Europe: Between Market and Laboratory. Klein, U. & Spary, E. Chicago: The University of Chicago Press. 283-292.
- Eddy, M. (2007). The Aberdeen Agricola: Chemical Principles and Practice in James Anderson's Georgics and Geology. In New Narratives in Eighteenth-Century Chemistry: Contributions from the First Francis Bacon Workshop, 21–23 April 2005, California Institute of Technology, Pasadena, California. Principe, L.M. Dordrecht: Springer. 139-156.
- Eddy, M. & Knight, D. (2006). Introduction. In William Paley's Natural Theology. Eddy, M. & Knight, D. Oxford: Oxford University Press.
- Eddy, M. (2005). Set in stone: medicine and the vocabulary of the earth in 18th-century Scotland. In Science and Beliefs: From Natural Philosophy to Natural Science, 1700–1900. Eddy, M. & Knight, D. Aldershot: Ashgate. 77-94.
- Eddy, M., Mauskopf, S. & Newman, W. (2014). Chemical Knowledge in the Early Modern World. Osiris. Chicago: University of Chicago.
- (2011). Prehistoric Minds: Human Origins as a Cultural Artefact, 1780-2010. Royal Society of London.
- Eddy, M. & Knight, D. (2008). William Paley’s Natural Theology: or, Evidences of the Existence and Attributes of the Deity. Modern Classics Series. Oxford: Oxford University Press.
- Eddy, M. & Knight, D. (2005). Science and Beliefs: From Natural Philosophy to Natural Science, 1700-1900. Aldershot: London: Routledge.
- Eddy, Matthew (2016). The Child Writer: Graphic Literacy and the Scottish Educational System, 1700-1820. History of Education 45(6): 695-718.
- Eddy, M. (2016). The Interactive Notebook: How Students Learned to Keep Notes during the Scottish Enlightenment. Book History 19(1): 86-131.
- Eddy, Matthew Daniel, Mauskopf, Seymour H. & Newman, William R. (2014). An Introduction to Chemical Knowledge in the Early Modern World. Osiris 29(1): 1-15.
- Eddy, Matthew Daniel (2014). How to See a Diagram: A Visual Anthropology of Chemical Affinity. Osiris 29(1): 178-196.
- Eddy, Matthew Daniel (2013). The Shape of Knowledge: Children and the Visual Culture of Literacy and Numeracy. Science in Context 26(2): 215-245.
- Eddy, M. (2011). The Line of Reason: Hugh Blair, Spatiality and the Progressive Structure of Language. Notes and Records of the Royal Society 65(1): 9-24.
- Eddy, M. (2011). The Prehistoric Mind as a Historical Artefact. Notes and Records of the Royal Society 65(1): 1-8.
- Eddy, M. (2010). The Alphabets of Nature: Children, Books and Natural History in Scotland, circa 1750-1800. Nuncius 25(1): 1-22.
- Eddy, M. (2010). Tools for reordering:Commonplacing and the Space of Words in Linnaeus' Philosophia Botanica. Intellectual History Review 20(2): 227-252.
- Eddy, M. (2008). ‘An adept in medicine’ the Reverend Dr William Laing, nervous complaints and the commodification of spa water. Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part C: Studies in History and Philosophy of Biological and Biomedical Sciences 39(1): 1-13.
- Eddy, M. (2008). The Dark Side of Collecting: Early Modern Chemistry, Humanism and Classification. Ambix 55: 283-292.
- Eddy, M. (2006). Academic Capital, Postgraduate Research and British Universities: A Bourdieu Inspired Reflection. Discourse: learning and teaching in philosophical and religious studies 6(1): 211-223.
- Eddy, M. (2006). The medium of signs: nominalism, language and the philosophy of mind in the early thought of Dugald Stewart. Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part C: Studies in History and Philosophy of Biological and Biomedical Sciences 37(3): 373-393.
- Eddy, M. (2005). Converging Paths or Separate Roads? The Roles Played by Science, Medicine and Philosophy in the Scottish Enlightenment. Philosophical Writings 30: 30-40.
- Eddy, M. (2004). Elements, Principles and the Narrative of Affinity. Foundations of Chemistry 6: 161-175.
- Eddy, M. (2004). Scottish Chemistry, Classification and the Late Mineralogical Career of the "Ingenious" Professor John Walker. British Journal for the History of Science 37: 373-399.
- Eddy, M. (2004). The Rhetoric and Science of William Paley's Natural Theology. Literature and Theology 18(1): 1-22.
- Eddy, M. (2003). Do Philosophers Make the Worst of Poets? Philosophical Writings 23: 81-85.
- Eddy, M. (2003). The University of Edinburgh Natural History Class Lists. Archives of Natural History 30: 97-117.
- Eddy, M. (2002). Scottish Chemistry, Classification and the Early Mineralogical Career of the "Ingenious" Rev. Dr. John Walker. British Journal for the History of Science 35: 411-438.
- Eddy, M. (2001). Geology, Mineralogy and Time in John Walker's University of Edinburgh Natural History Lectures. History of Science 39: 95-119.
- Eddy, M. (2001). The Doctrine of Salts and Rev John Walker's Analysis of Scottish Spa. Ambix 48: 137-160.