Session 1.1.3: PANEL: Olfactory Heritage: Sensory Mining and Olfactory Taxonomies

PANEL: Olfactory Heritage
9:30, Thursday 6 May 2021 (1 hour 30 minutes)
Break    11:00 AM to 11:30 AM (30 minutes)
  Virtual session
This session is in the past.
The virtual space is closed.
Virtual space archived

Organizer: Inger Leemans, Royal Netherlands Academy of Arts and Sciences, Netherlands

William Tullett, History of smell, Olfactory taxonomies, History of knowledge, Anglia Ruskin University, UK

Marieke van Erp (Royal Netherlands Academy of Arts and Sciences) and Raphael Troncy (EURECOM), Sensory Mining: Collecting and Classifying Data for Olfactory Heritage, Netherlands and France

Caro Verbeek Vrije, Knowing by smelling: Diagnosing and evaluating scents from the past, Universiteit Amsterdam, Netherlands

This panel, presented by the Odeuropa project on Olfactory Heritage and Sensory Mining, discusses methodologies for sensory mining and olfactory taxonomies. Historian William Tullett will address the different taxonomies used to classify smells in Europe since the seventeenth century. The paper discusses how expert domains (medicine, perfumery, natural history, chemistry) categorized smells, classified objects through smells, and linked binary taxonomies of smell to the affective performance of professional identity. Furthermore, the paper will probe the relationship between ‘expert’ taxonomies and everyday - vernacular - taxonomies of smell. In the second paper, NLP and Semantic Web specialists Marieke van Erp and Raphael Troncy present their work on sensory mining for olfactory data. What models can we develop to trace, compare and classify smell references in vocabularies, taxonomies, and ontologies? The paper will present how an ‘Olfactory Knowledge Graph’ may combine and order historical olfactory source descriptions, intangible properties, chemical composition, while taking into account temporal and spatial dimensions. In the third paper, Caro Verbeek present educational and museological case studies to underline the importance of embodied cognition for olfactory classifications. Smelling enables scholars and heritage visitors to better understand olfactory taxonomies and dichotomies and to (historically) contextualize scents.

Vrije Universiteit
KNAW Humanities Cluster
Anglia Ruskin University
Royal Netherlands Academy of Arts and Sciences
Associate Professor


    52 Attendees