2/1/19: Making Time: Time Measurement and Temporal Concepts in Tokugawa Japan

Friday, February 1, 2019 3:00 PM – 5:00 PM

Rome Hall 459
801 22nd Street, NW
Washington District Of Columbia 20052


Co-hosted by the GW Department of East Asian Languages and Literature and the Sigur Center for Asian Studies.

What is time made of? We might balk at such a question, and reply that time is not made of anything—it is an abstract and universal phenomenon. But the time measurement practices of Tokugawa Japan (1600-1868)—practices rooted in a timekeeping system in which hours changed their lengths with the seasons—tell us otherwise. Exploring the logic of Tokugawa clockmakers who designed mechanical clocks that measured time in variable hours, this talk will show how concepts of time are rooted in very concrete images and tangible practices.   

Dr. Yulia Frumer (Ph.D., Princeton) is an Assistant Professor in the Department of History of Science and Technology at Johns Hopkins University. She is the author of the book Making Time: Astronomical Time Measurement in Tokugawa Japan (University of Chicago Press, 2018). 

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