The Metaphor of the Stranger in the Historical Narrative of Science

The recognition by the sociology of scientific knowledge of the artifactuality and contingent character of scientific knowledge has resulted in considering the canonical narrative forms of history of science as unsustainable (Golinski 1998). However, Kuukkanen (2012) holds that the social turn in the historiography of science has led to the adoption of social research models, which therefore caused the empirization of the field and prevented the appropriation of narrativist contributions to the theory of history. This paper analyzes the way in which the metaphors of the stranger are used as historical distancing devices in Leviathan and the Air-Pump by Shapin and Schaffer. The examination of these devices constitutes a means of entry into historical narrative that allows us to evaluate the acceptance of the figural character in this historiographical production.