Science is continually confronted by new and difficult social and ethical problems. Some of these problems have arisen from the transformation of the academic science of the prewar period into the industrialized science of the present. Traditional theories of science are now widely recognized as obsolete. In Scientific Knowledge and Its Social Problems (originally published in 1971), Jerome R. Ravetz analyzes the work of science as the creation and investigation of problems. He demonstrates the…
Geology and Medicine: Exploring the Historical Links and the Development of Public Health and Forensic Medicine Celebrating the Tercentenary of Sir John Hill 2-4 November: Geological Society, Burlington House, Piccadilly, London
The Perceptions of Pregnancy blog, like the Researchers’ Network, aims to reach beyond boundaries and borders, and to facilitate an international and interdisciplinary conversation on pregnancy and its associated bodily and emotional experiences from the medieval to the modern. Today’s post is contributed by Jessica Borge, who has curated an AHR- funded image gallery of 1960s oral contraceptive advertising. The gallery will be available to view here from the afternoon of Monday, 3 November.
Voters going to the polls in Illinois’s 12th congressional district in this year’s US midterm elections have a choice to make. Do they want a Congressman who is reserved, calm, the model of a modern politician…
Unfinished spina ventosa drawing from the Bigelow papers.
The Center for the History of Medicine is pleased to announce that the Henry Jacob Bigelow papers are open to research.
Henry Jacob Bigelow (1818-1890) was born and raised in Boston and received his B.A. in 1837 from Harvard College and his M.D. in 1841 from Harvard Medical School. Bigelow studied in Europe in the early 1840s and returned to practice in Boston in 1844. He married Susan Sturgis in 1847; the couple had one child and Stur… »
By Claudia Wassmann Differences in people’s emotionality have an important impact both on how they react to events in their daily lives and how they feel about themselves. In the past ten years, research has illuminated that small variations in our genetic make-up can significantly
In 1987 Rebecca Louise Cann, Mark Stoneking, and Allan Charles Wilson published "Mitochondrial DNA and Human Evolution" in the journal Nature. The authors compared mitochondrial DNA from different human populations worldwide, and from those comparisons they argued that all human populations had a common ancestor in Africa around 200,000 years ago. Mitochondria DNA (mtDNA) is a small circular genome found in those parts of cells called mitochondria.
The past 20th, 21st and 22nd of October took finally place at the Louis Jeantet Auditorium in Geneva the meeting “Emotional Bodies: A Workshop on the Historical Performativity of Emotions”. Three days of fascinating papers, passionate conversations and challenging questions that I will try to summarize here in a few lines. The aim of this […]
In 2015-16, the Pembroke Center at Brown University is awarding one-year residential postdoctoral fellowships to scholars from any field whose research relates to t
he theme of “Fatigue”. Fellows are required to participate weekly in the Pembroke Seminar, teach one undergraduate course, and pursue individual research.
The term of appointment is July 1, 2015-June 30, 2016. The stipend is $50,000, plus a supplement for health insurance and $1,500 for research expenses. The deadline for application »
(Tip o’ the hat to Blake Stacey for first pointing this story out to me!)
The history of science is filled with macabre tales of self-experimentation, amoral experimentation on others, horrific accidents, and even mysterious and sinister disappearances. Perhaps the most unusual tale I’ve come across, however, involves an alleged duel — not with swords or guns, but with sausages.
“Choose your weapon, sir.” German Bratwurste, via Wikipedia.
The opponents in this duel are as incongruous as the »
It’s just after midday on a late spring day in 1842 and the wooden viewing galleries that surround the operating room of University College Hospital, London, are packed. The foremost surgeon of his age is about to begin work.
Gavin de Beer was an English zoologist known for his contributions to evolution and embryology, in particular for showing the inadequacy of the germ layer theory as it was then proposed. He was born in London, England, on 1 November 1899, but was raised for his first thirteen years in France where his father worked for a telegraph company.
Contagiata da antiche festività pagane, HK vi racconta una storia dell’orrore in salsa storica. La nostra nuova collaboratrice Giulia ci introduce alla vita del Dottor Galvani, uomo di scienza bolognese che nel ‘700 svolse numerosi esperimenti riguardanti l’elettricità animale. Queste esperienze portate avanti dai suoi allievi ispirarono uno dei più famosi romanzi horror della Storia: Frankenstein di Mary Shelley.
di Maria Giulia Andretta
«Ero lì, in piedi vicino alla porta, quando una ling… »
It may not look like much, but this is the landing page ofthe oldest known website in the United States. It was set up in 1991 byphysicist Paul Kunz—he installed the first ever web server outside of Europe atthe SLAC Nat…
By Ginny A. Roth
I. Greek Physician, 1962 National Library of Medicine #A024479
Still looking for a costume idea for Halloween? You have a few hours left to make this important decision. There’s always the option of going as the ubiquitous vampire. Or you can grab a cape and dress as one of the many super-heroes protecting our streets during the scariest night of the year. Of course there are always other options. Have you ever considered… a medical costume?
The image featured above … »
BJHS Themes is a new, fully open access, peer-reviewed journal for the history of science. It publishes annual thematic collections aimed at animating the history of science community insightful, original and timely studies that hit the historiographical moment. Articles are free to read online for all and, in most circumstances, free for the author too. We encourage you to consider contributing a proposal to the competition for the first volume. The deadline for submission of proposals this …
Organismal biology is an established scholarly discipline, yet its origins have been obscured by Darwinian histories of biology. Esposito presents a historiography of organicist and holistic thought through an examination of the work of leading biologists from Britain and America.
I’ve written about body snatchers several times on this site, and each time, readers ask for more. Given that it’s Halloween, I thought I would give into that request and return to the subject in a longer, more comprehensive article about these fascinating creatures from the early 19th century. Happy Halloween!
It is half past two in the morning on October 10th, 1777. The new moon casts a bluish light over St George’s burial ground off Hanover Square in London. Two men, clad in dark clothes, e… »
In 1880, a middle-aged woman paid a visit to the French neurologist, Jules Cotard (pictured below), complaining of an unusual predicament. She believed she had ‘no brain, no nerves, no chest, no stomach, no intestines’. Mademoiselle X, as Cotard dubbed her in his notes, told the physician she was ‘nothing more than a decomposing body’. She believed neither God nor Satan existed, and that she had no soul. As she could not die a natural death, she had ‘no need to eat’.
Mademoiselle X later died … »
The Washington times. (Washington [D.C.]) 1902-1939, April 16, 1913, LAST AND HOME EDITION, Page 5, Image 5, brought to you by Library of Congress, Washington, DC, and the National Digital Newspaper Program.
By Johanna Goldberg, Information Services Librarian While in the stacks recently, we came across this intriguing cover. How can you not open the book? The title page did not disappoint. Food adulteration was a dangerous problem…
In my previous post, I presented a comic parody of an ancient eye-remedy. That recipe, created by the comedian Aristophanes, was too horrid to be true. Yet eye-remedies were far from pleasant in the ancient world. Witness the achariston, the … Continue reading →
The eloquently excellent Elegant Fowl (aka Pete Langman @elegantfowl) just drew my attention to a piece of high-grade seventeenth-century history of science rubbish on the website of my favourite newspaper The Guardian. In the books section a certain Ian Mortimer has an article entitled The 10 greatest changes of the past 1,000 years. I must to my shame admit that I’d never heard of Ian Mortimer and had no idea who he is. However I quick trip to Wikipedia informed that I have to do with Dr Ian … »
Free Kindle Download of the Sci-Fi alternative history novel, Renegade World. Aliens meddling in Earth’s history. Genetically engineered characters with embedded artificial intelligence. A young Renegade Visionary from the late 21st Century travels back in time to the beginning of the 16th century. Native American characters. Martial Arts. Coming of age.
by Andy Brown
Plaster cast crucifixion of the body of James Legg, Chelsea pensioner, hanged for murder Nov 2, 1801, by Thomas Banks (1735-1805), Image Courtesy of The Royal Academy.
I’m here to settle an artists’ debate –
this seventy-three-year-old body deposed
from the scaffold and hammered to a cross;
cut down from the gallows and harshly flayed
to put the artists’ doubtful minds at rest:
the sculptor Banks, the painters Cosway, West.
Gentlemen! Let me help you put it straight:
Last week I had the opportunity to show some of the work the Newton Project is doing at the Text Encoding Initiative (TEI) conference at Northwestern University in Evanston, Illinois. I decided to go linguistic and focus on some of the intricacies of early modern hand and print. Here’s a short excerpt of part of that talk.
As most of us are aware of, in Newton’s days Latin was the lingua franca of scholarly and scientific communication. This did not mean however that all scholarly publications… »
The Center for the History of Medicine presents: The True Story of a Government-Ordered Book-Burning in America: Wilhelm Reich’s Books and Journals, and What Was in Them?
James E. Strick, Ph.D.:
Associate Professor and Chair, Department of Earth & Environment, and of Technology & Science, Franklin and Marshall College, and
Filmmaker, Associate Director of The Wilhelm Reich Museum, and Board Member of The Wilhelm Reich Infant Trust
In 1956 and 1960, the US g… »
The forepaw of a typical eastern gray squirrel is about one half of an inch wide: rather feeble, as far as far as digging tools go. Yet every fall, squirrels become diligent movers of earth, shoveling through soggy leaves and muddy ground to deposit their winter stores of nuts. For the most part, squirrels labor without eliciting much comment from their human neighbors: they are, after all, among the most familiar inhabitants of the American urban landscape. But this wasn’t always the case.
Department of Postgraduate and Continuing Education, McLean Hospital and the Center for the History of Medicine, Francis A. Countway Library of Medicine, present:
Colloquium on the History of Psychiatry and Medicine “Boundary Disputes Between British Psychiatry and Neurology”
Stephen T. Casper, Ph.D.: Associate Professor, History of Science, Humanities, and Social Sciences, Clarkson University
The last in a series of four lectures given as the 2014 Colloquium on the History of Psychiatry and M… »