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XXXV-1 | 2020
L’Homme et la mesure

Nouvelles approches en sciences humaines et sociales des pratiques et représentations des poids et mesures
Human Culture and Measurement
ISBN 978-2-7132-2841-4

Moving beyond research which aims simply to identify historical units of measurement and make them more intelligible by converting them to our modern system, it is time to develop a social and cultural approach to measurement practices, building on the work of Witold Kula. This issue features several case studies by archaeologists and historians – of Antiquity and the Middle Ages – who analyse material culture to conduct a dual objectifying endeavour, examining both the intellection and representation of weights and measures in ancient times, and the historiographic categories in use today. The notions of “value” and “consensus”, with all their subjective nuances, thus play a central role, not only in establishing metric standards and norms in past societies, but also in a reflective approach to measurement questions.

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