In the 19th century, scientific institutions, voluntary organizations, and even private individuals hosted what were known as ‘conversazione,’ evening gatherings to showcase science and the arts. These events varied from the homespun and intimate to the lavish and spectacular. At these sometimes cacophonous, occasionally brandy-soaked events, world-renowned scientific professionals mingled with amateur explorers and enthusiasts as well as the general public. There were lectures, displays, performances, and, of course, conversation!
In this podcast, we invite you to join our own version of these classic Victorian affairs – a cocktail party with experts on the history of science. Conversazione were about information but they were also very much about entertainment, so we ask our guests in each episode to regale us with a story about the history of science that will captivate us for a drink or two.
Episode 1 (1 May 2017): ‘Conversazione’