The Max Planck Institute for the History of Science in Berlin, Department II (Prof. Lorraine Daston), announces one two-year: Postdoctoral Fellowship, starting date September 1, 2015.
Outstanding scholars no more than three years past the award of their doctorates are invited to apply.
The fellow will join the MPG Minerva Research Group “Reading and Writing Nature in Early Modern Europe” lead by Dr. Elaine Leong. The research group investigates how reading and writing practices shaped the transfer and codification of medical and natural knowledge in early modern Europe. Further details concerning the project may be found at
Possible research topics include:
*Histories of early modern translation broadly defined. Research projects which track translation as an epistemic process between vernaculars and/or cross­cultural interactions are particularly welcome.
*The culture (material, social and intellectual) of selecting, collecting, preserving, classifying, and transmitting textual knowledge and, in particular, note-taking practices and paperwork and paper technologies.
*Histories of reading (e.g. studies of marginalia and annotations, histories of book collections and libraries)
*Histories of manuscript and printed book production including publishing and print, scribal publication and translation practices.
*Gender and histories of book production and consumption

Candidates should hold a doctorate in the history of science or a related field at the time the fellowship begins; the quality and relevance of the project rather than the discipline in which the doctoral degree was awarded will be decisive in the award of fellowships.
The Max Planck Institute for the History of Science is an international and interdisciplinary research institute ( It is expected that candidates will be able to present their own work and discuss that of others fluently in English. The fellowship includes a travel fund of 1000 € annually.
Candidates of all nationalities are welcome to apply; applications from women are especially welcomed. The Max Planck Society is committed to promoting more handicapped individuals and encourages them to apply. Postdoctoral fellows are expected to participate in the research activities of the Institute. Fellowships are endowed with a monthly stipend between 2.100 € and 2.500 € (fellows from abroad) or between 1.468 € and 1.621 € (fellows from Germany). Alternatively to a fellowship, fellows may opt for a contract TVöD E14 in the German system.
Candidates are requested to send a curriculum vitae, publication list, certification of receipt of doctoral degree, research prospectus (maximum 750 words), and one sample text (e.g. a journal article, book chapter, dissertation excerpt; maximum 10,000 words). These materials must be submitted as one single PDF-document. Candidates should also arrange for two reference letters (one of which should be from the candidate’s doctoral advisor) to be sent separately.
All application materials (including reference letters) must be submitted no later than 1 March, 2015 (23:58 CET) to:
Please note that only electronic submissions via this link will be accepted.
For questions concerning the research project and the Minerva Research Group, please contact Dr. Elaine Leong (; for administrative questions concerning the position and the Institute, please contact Claudia Paaß (, Head of Administration, or Jochen Schneider
(, Research Coordinator. Finalists may expect a decision by March 27, 2015.