Science from Sight to Insight: How Scientists Illustrate Meaning (with Alan G. Gross, University of Chicago Press, November 2013). In the last two decades, scholars in science studies—cognitive psychologists, historians, philosophers, social scientists, and rhetoricians—have begun to take seriously what they had previously taken for granted: the pervasiveness of images in scientific texts. Still, the emphasis in scholarly inquiry into scientific communication remains firmly on the verbal. We regard Science from Sight to Insight as a next step, a step that will bring the study of scientific images closer to the mainstream. We will do so by offering a theory of the diverse ways the verbal and the visual interact to create and communicate science, as well as applications of the theory to scientific visuals appearing in different communicative contexts: journal articles and books, of course, but also PowerPoint presentations and the Internet. While many scholars from a wide spectrum of disciplines have dealt with scientific visuals, none to our knowledge has seriously taken into account the verbal-visual interactions through which meaning ultimately emerges. Practicing what we preach the book will reproduce more than one-hundred visuals spanning four centuries.
Joseph gives an overview of the book:
As a science writer/editor for over three decades, Joseph Harmon has edited and helped write thousands of scientific articles, as well as research proposals, abstracts, book chapters, news releases, and technical books and reports. As an independent scholar, he has written...