Participant Info

First Name
Last Name
York University, Dept. of History
Website URL
Book History, Maritime History, Sailors, Pirates, Early Modern, History of Science, History of Technology, Mathematics Education, Rare Books
Additional Contact Information

Personal Info

About Me

Margaret Elizabeth Schotte is an Associate Professor in the Department of History at York University in Toronto, Canada.

She studies early modern history of science, specializing in book history, history of technology, and the cultural and social history of Europe from 1500-1800. Her monograph, Sailing School: Navigating Science and Skill, 1550-1800 (Johns Hopkins University Press (2019) investigates how early modern sailors developed mathematical and technical expertise in the age of exploration and the print revolution. From bookshops to classrooms to ships’ decks, Sailing School gives us a new picture of expert navigators at a time when knowledge of the natural world was undergoing dramatic shifts.

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Recent Publications

“When Pirates Studied Euclid” Aeon Magazine (July 2, 2019)

“The Navigator in the Early Modern World” Time to Eat the Dogs podcast with Michael F. Robinson (Dec. 17, 2018)

Ph.D. Dissertation: “A Calculated Course: Creating Transoceanic Navigators, 1580-1800.” Princeton University, 2014; winner of the 2016 Frank Broeze Prize for Outstanding Doctoral Thesis in Maritime History.

“Expert Records: Nautical Logbooks from Columbus to Cook,” Information & Culture: A Journal of History 48 no. 3 (2013), 281-322.

“Regimented Lessons: The Evolution of the Nautical Logbook in France,” Annuaire de Droit Maritime et Océanique (June 2013), 91-115.


Media Coverage
Country Focus
England, France, Netherlands, Atlantic World, New France
Expertise by Geography
Atlantic, England, France, Netherlands, Western Europe
Expertise by Chronology
Pre-17th century, 17th century, 18th century, Early Modern
Expertise by Topic
Book History, Pedagogy, Science, Technology