Jin-Woo Choi

Position
Graduate Student
Bio/Description

Jin-Woo Choi is a sixth-year PhD candidate specializing in early modern European social and cultural history, with a particular focus on climate and environment. His dissertation, entitled “Melting Memories: Meteorology and the Great Winter of 1709,” brings together sources from over 40 archives across Italy, Germany, France, Britain and North America to comparatively examine social responses and mechanisms of resilience to seasonal extremes, as well as the cultural perceptions and institutional contexts that turned the winter of 1708-09 into a cold standard of hibernal severity.

In the 2023–24 academic year, Jin-Woo will finish his dissertation under the auspices of the Harold W. Dodds Fellowship from the Princeton Graduate School, after which he will begin his appointment as Prize Fellow in Economics, History, and Politics at Harvard University.

Before joining Princeton, Jin-Woo received a BA in History from University College London in 2014 and MPhil in Intellectual History from the University of Cambridge in 2017, with two intervening years of military service. In the 2021-22 academic year, he was a visiting student at the Università Ca’ Foscari Venezia. His doctoral research has been generously supported by the Mellon Foundation and Social Science Research Council, the Taylor-Wei Fellowship in the History of Meteorology, the Johann Lorenz Bausch Stipendium from the German National Academy of Sciences Leopoldina, the Gerda Henkel Foundation, the Folger Institute, and the American Philosophical Society Library & Museum.

Current research projects besides the dissertation include the history of the aurora borealis, medical meteorology and translating environments in the Danish colony of Trankebar, Jesuit weather observers in East Asia, chronicles as sources of climate history, and the construction and management of ports in Genoa since the fifteenth century.

Selected Publications

Jin-Woo Choi, “Remembrance of Auroras Past: The Enlightenment Search for Northern Lights in Historical Sources,” Isis: A Journal of the History of Science Society, Vol.115, No.2 (June 2024): pp. 214-240.

Jin-Woo Choi, “1709: A Winter of Content in the Republic of Meteorological Letters,” History of Universities, Vol.36, No.2 (October 2023): pp. 184-204.

Jin-Woo Choi, “Eyes on the Sky: Collective Weather Observation in Early Modern Europe,” Proceedings of the American Philosophical Society (Forthcoming 2024).

Selected Publications

Jin-Woo Choi, “Remembrance of Auroras Past: The Enlightenment Search for Northern Lights in Historical Sources,” Isis: A Journal for the History of Science, Vol.115 No.2 (forthcoming June 2024).

Jin-Woo Choi, “Eyes on the Sky: Collective Weather Observation in Early Modern Europe,” Proceedings of the American Philosophical Society (forthcoming 2024).

Jin-Woo Choi, “1709: A Winter of Content in the Republic of Meteorological Letters,” History of Universities, Vol.36 No.2 (2023): 184-204.

Year of Study
Sixth Year
Area of Interest
Book History
Climate History
Cultural History
Economic History
Environmental History
History of Technology
Medicine & Health
Social History
Home Department & Other Affiliations
History
Period
15th & 16th Centuries
17th & 18th Centuries
Region
Europe
North America