Chapter 1: Cultures of Speculation—Histories of Speculation
This article looks into early modern temporal cultures and cultures of speculation, how they evolved with the Renaissance and the Age of European expansion. Not only the development of probability and risk calculation but also genres such as travel narratives and utopian/satirical literatures show how much the period between the fourteenth and the early nineteenth century was about a broad range of forms of speculation. Speculation in the early modern period was about futures that were more than a mere extension of the present but also about speculating on the past, on eternity and untime. With going back into these histories of speculation, I seek to open up horizons of speculation which serve as a speculum for today's cultures of speculation. The varieties and simultaneity of timescapes in the early modern period could thus help critically assess our own times, temporal cultures and modes of speculation and could help produce new possibilities and opportunities for the future – and other related concepts of time.