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Accueil > Publications > Ouvrages parus > Ouvrages des membres de SPHERE : 2015–... > Pieces and Parts in Scientific Texts

Pieces and Parts in Scientific Texts

Florence Bretelle-Establet, Stéphane Schmitt, (CNRS, SPHERE), Eds

" This book starts from a first general observation : there are very diverse ways to frame and convey scientific knowledge in texts. It then analyzes texts on mathematics, astronomy, medicine and life sciences, produced in various parts of the globe and in different time periods, and examines the reasons behind the segmentation of texts and the consequences of such textual divisions. How can historians and philosophers of science approach this diversity, and what is at stake in dealing with it ? The book addresses these questions, adopting a specific approach to do so.

In order to shed light on the diversity of organizational patterns and rhetorical strategies in scientific texts, and to question the rationale behind the choices made to present such texts in one particular way, it focuses on the issue of text segmentation, offering answers to questions such as : What was the meaning of segmenting texts into paragraphs, chapters, sections and clusters ? Was segmentation used to delimit self-contained units, or to mark breaks in the physical appearance of a text in order to aid reading and memorizing, or to cope with the constraints of the material supports ? How, in these different settings and in different texts, were pieces and parts made visible ? "

: : Springer
: : Collection Why the Sciences of the Ancient World Matter
: : 2018
: : VIII, 355 p.
: : DOI : 10.1007/978-3-319-78467-0


  • Introduction pp. 3-17 :
    Bretelle-Establet, Florence (et al.)
  • Textual Places : “Parts of Text” and “Stretches of Text”, pp. 19-46 :
    Lefebvre, Julie,
  • Segmentation of Texts in Old Babylonian Mathematics, pp. 49-70
    Proust, Christine,
  • Textual Segmentation in Babylonian Astral Science, pp. 71-87 :
    Ossendrijver, Mathieu,
  • Parts in Chinese Mathematical Texts. Interpreting the Chapter Form of The Nine Chapters on Mathematical Procedures, pp. 91-133 :
    Chemla, Karine (et al.),
  • “Parts of Text” in the Mathematical Literature of Ancient Greece : From the Author to His Commentator. The Example of Conics by Apollonius of Perga, pp. 135-157 :
    Decorps-Foulquier, Micheline,
  • Text Segmentation, Chapter Naming and the Transmission of Embedded Texts in South Asia, with Special Reference to the Medical and Philosophical Traditions as Exemplified by the Carakasaṃhitā and the Nyāyasūtra, pp. 159-220 :
    Preisendanz, Karin,
  • Writing with and from Parts of the Discourses of Others in Chinese Medical Texts : Where Syntax and Layout Matter, pp. 223-267 :
    Bretelle-Establet, Florence,
  • Epigraphs as Parts of Text in Natural History Books in the Eighteenth Century : Between Intertextuality and the Architecture of the Book, pp. 269-295 :
    Schmitt, Stéphane,
  • Collecting Languages, Alphabets and Texts : The Circulation of ‘Parts of Texts’ Among Paper Cabinets of Linguistic Curiosities (Sixteenth-Seventeenth Century), pp. 297-346 :
    Simon, Fabien