The field of the history of artificial cold is of particular interest to historians, sociologists and anthropologists of science, technology and medicine on two counts: it is a domain where science, technology and industry have often been closely linked, as well as a field in which European science, industry and technology have excelled. Moreover, it is a domain that invites studies of issues related to a number of social transformations brought about by the extensive use of artificial cold in the latter part of the 19th century, and especially during the 20th century. The development of industrial and domestic refrigeration and transport brought about amazingly varied and long lasting changes in urbanization and everyday life, whose impact ranged from changes in the habits of eating, the organization of family life, women’s everyday life, home architecture, use of appliances etc.
With the proposed ERG project our aim is two-fold: Firstly, we aim to map the appropriation of refrigeration technologies in Greece (late 19th-20th centuries) 2. The use of mechanical refrigeration in Greece goes hand in hand with the industrialisation of the country throughout the 20th century, the development of its critical infrastructures, the emergence of new actors such as technicians and their associations, but is also inseparable from more general social and cultural issues, such as concepts about ‘fresh’ and ‘perishable’ produce. Secondly we aim to add to existing literature a new dimension through the examination of the expository practices of some of the main actors behind refrigeration. A careful examination of a wide range of specialist and non-specialist texts and the discourse developed around refrigeration will bring to the fore the values and ideas associated with the increasingly important role of refrigeration for the immediate prospects of modern society, but also the interests of specific groups of people that often clashed with existing local market.
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