Scholarly Personae and Twentieth-Century Historians: Explorations of a Concept

Bosch, M., 2016, In : BMGN - Low Countries Historical Review. 131, 4, p. 33-54 12 p.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

In this article Bosch argues in favour of an understanding of the concept of ‘persona’ in which embodiment means more than the conclusion that everything that men do originates in or arises from a body. Following historians of science and their biographical achievements, Bosch considers being perceived as a reliable and trustworthy scientist or scholar as the core of the formation of a scientific/scholarly identity or persona that scientists and scholars can perform in a specific context. They do so with an eye to how other scientists perform their identities and with the creative use of old and new repertoires of scientific performance and social constructions of identity (for instance in terms of gender, class or race) that contribute to scientific authority. By focussing on the scientific or scholarly persona or the self-fashioning in biographies of scholars and scientists, such works can elucidate the epistemology of a discipline or field of research, especially with respect to the question of who earns scientific authority on what grounds. After a thorough discussion of the relevant literature relating to scientific biography or the biographical approach to historiography in which the concept of persona plays a role, Bosch, by way of a light exercise, applies her definition of persona to the analysis of an eclectically selected group of Dutch historians, men and women.
Translated title of the contributionWetenschappelijke personae en twintigste-eeuwse historici: Verkenning van een concept
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)33-54
Number of pages12
JournalBMGN - Low Countries Historical Review
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 2016


  • Scientific persona, VIRTUES

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