Seminar – A Hidden History: African women and the British health service, 1930 – 2000

Ijeoma Peter and Kaitlene Koranteng (Young Historians Project) The Young Historians Project (YHP) are currently working to uncover a new aspect of Black British History that our young people identified as having been left out of current historical narratives: the history of continental African women in the British health service from 1930-2000. As current narratives […]

Seminar – The Indian Hemp Drugs Commission, 1893-1894 and the uses of history in policy

Wayne Hall (Centre for Youth Substance Abuse Research (CYSAR), University of Queensland) Bio: Wayne Hall is a Professor at the Centre for Youth Substance Abuse Research at the University of Queensland and a Professor at the National Addiction Centre, Kings College London.  He has Professorial appointments at the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine […]

Seminar – Remembering the cost: oral history and payment for health services in Ghana, 1945-2019

David Bannister (University of Oslo) In the last years of colonial rule, during the transition to independence and over the independent Republic of Ghana’s first decade, efforts were made to socialize healthcare and waive user fees. For a time most health services became free. But from the early 1960s to the early 1980s, political instability […]

Seminar – Loss, change and adaptation: users’ experiences of the US opioid epidemic

Sarah Mars (University  of California, San Francisco) Bio:  Dr Sarah Mars is Qualitative Project Director of the Heroin in Transition study at the University of California San Francisco and Visiting Research Fellow at London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine.  She studied history at Cambridge University and undertook research for her PhD at London School […]

Seminar – The comparative politics of public health

Scott L. Greer University of Michigan Bio: Scott L. Greer, Ph.D., is Professor, Health Management and Policy,  Global Public Health, and Political Science at the School of Public Health, University of Michigan. His books include S.L. Greer. 2009. The Politics of European Union Health Policy (Maidenhead/Philadelphia: Open University Press), and S.L. Greer. 2004. Territorial Politics […]

Seminar – Politics Under the Influence. Vodka and Public Policy in Putin’s Russia

Anna Bailey Bio:  Dr Anna L. Bailey completed an MRes in East European Studies at SSEES-UCL in 2009, before continuing to doctoral study at SSEES-UCL, where she was supervised by Professor Alena Ledeneva. She was awarded a PhD in Political Science in 2015. Her doctoral research findings form the basis of her book Politics Under […]

Seminar – ‘My mother smoked like a beagle in a laboratory to get the coupons she needed for a toaster’: tobacco companies and the working-class in postwar Britain

Frances Thirlway University of York Bio:  Frances Thirlway is a Research Fellow at the University of York, Department of Sociology. She holds research grants from Cancer Research UK on health inequalities and electronic cigarettes and from the York Centre for Future Health on health inequalities and cannabis/cannabidiol self-medication for pain relief. Abstract:  I will argue […]

Seminar – Socialist international health and technical assistance

Dora Vargha (University of Exeter) Bio:  Dora Vargha is historian of medicine, science and technology at the University of Exeter, based jointly at the Department of History and the Wellcome Centre for Cultures and Environments of Health and is co-editor of Social History of Medicine journal. She has published on vaccine development in Eastern Europe, the […]

Seminar – Industrial development as a social determinant of health: historical reflections from Tanzania and Zimbabwe

Maureen Mackintosh (Open University) Bio:  Maureen Mackintosh is Professor of Economics at the Open University, and a development economist specialising in the economics of markets for health care and medicines, with particular reference to African health systems. She is PI on a collaborative research project with Tanzanian, Kenyan, Indian and UK colleagues called “GCRF Inclusive […]

Seminar – Re-evaluating the medical services in colonial Madras: the subordinate perspectives (1880-1935)

Arnab Chakraborty (University of York) Bio:  Arnab is a final year PhD candidate at the University of York. His doctoral research is funded by the Wellcome Trust and is titled ‘Medical transformation in Madras Presidency: military and civilian perspectives (1880-1935)’. His thesis focuses mainly on understanding the colonial medical scenario through the eyes and activities […]

Seminar – Toxic Drugs and Invisible Harms: Chemo-waste on an African Cancer Ward

Marissa Mika (University College London) Bio:  Marissa Mika is joining the University of Global Health Equity in Rwanda as Head of Humanities and Social Sciences in spring 2019. She holds a PhD (2015) in History and Sociology of Science from the University of Pennsylvania and an MHS (2007) in International Health from Johns Hopkins. Before teaching and […]

Seminar – ‘Health for All’ at 40: The history and politics of community health worker programmes

Alex Medcalf and Joao Nunes (University of York) Bio:  Dr Alexander Medcalf is a Research and Teaching Fellow at the University of York, Department of History, and Deputy Director of the WHO Collaborating Centre for Global Health Histories. Dr Joao Nunes is a Senior Lecturer in International Relations at the Department of Politics, University of York. […]

Seminar – Health Care and the Histories of Development in Colonial India

Samiksha Sehrawat (Newcastle University) Bio: Samiksha Sehrawat is Lecturer at Newcastle University. She has published on gender history, urban history, the princely states and military history, the social history of medicine, peasant societies, imperial history and Indians in the First World War. Her first monograph, Colonial Medical Care in North India: Gender, State and Society, c. 1840-1920 (OUP, […]

Seminar – Rich Girls on Dope

Chris Hallam (Swansea University) Bio: Dr Christopher Hallam obtained his PhD at LSHTM, and is presently a research associate at the Global Drug Policy Observatory at Swansea University. He is also a researcher at International Drug Policy Consortium. Abstract: This seminar will be based on research drawn from my recently published book ‘White drug cultures and […]

Seminar – Historical Epidemiology and Global Health

James Webb (Colby College, USA) Bio:  James L.A. Webb, Jr. is Research Professor at Colby College in Waterville, Maine. Jim is a pioneer in the field of historical epidemiology. His work integrates approaches from the biological sciences and the social sciences to produce perspectives that are useful to historians, practitioners, and planners in the field of […]

Seminar – Exploring emotions within religious histories of HIV/AIDS in England, c. 1982-1997.

George J. Severs, (Selwyn College, Cambridge) Bio: George J. Severs is a PhD student at the Faculty of History, University of Cambridge and a member of Selwyn College. He is an active member of the Oral History Society’s LGBTQ Special Interest Group, and helped to convene the personal testimony and memory strand of the July […]

Seminar – Co-Creating the Guide Dog Partnership: Blindness, Canines and Emotional Practices in 1930s America

Neil Pemberton (University of Manchester) Bio: In January 2017, Neil Pemberton joined the Wellcome Trust funded interdisciplinary project and research team led by Robert Kirk. Entitled “Multispecies Medicine” this project critically explores the different ways in which medicine have formed partnerships with nonhuman animals to enhance wellbeing and health. His main contribution to this project […]

Seminar – Identity, inheritance, and emotion: Oral histories of sickle cell anaemia in Britain, 1962 to 2018

Grace Redhead (University College London) Bio:  Grace Redhead is a final year PhD student at University College London, where she held a Wellcome Doctoral Award. Her research examines the interactions between post-war immigration, the Welfare State and ideas of belonging and citizenship in Britain. She is the 2018/19 Royal Historical Society Centenary Fellow, based at […]

Seminar – A critical analysis of the justification for the Australian e-cigarettes sales ban

Wayne Hall l,2, Kylie Morphett 3 and Coral Gartner, 3 Faculty of Health and Behavioural Sciences, Centre for Youth Substance Abuse Research, the University of Queensland National Addiction Centre, Kings College London Faculty of Medicine, School of Public Health, the University of Queensland Bio:  Wayne Hall is a Professor at the Centre for Youth Substance […]

Seminar – Medicine, work, and emotions in mid-century Mills & Boon novels

Agnes Arnold-Forster (University of Roehampton) Bio:  Agnes Arnold-Forster is a medical and cultural historian of modern Britain. She is currently a Postdoctoral Research Fellow on the Wellcome Trust Investigator Award, Surgery & Emotion, based at the University of Roehampton, and Project Manager on the Wellcome Trust Collaborative Award, Living with Feeling, at Queen Mary, University […]

Seminar – Emotions and sexual pleasure’: Early forms of sexual counselling in Britain (1930s-1950s)

Caroline Rusterholz (University of Cambridge) Bio: Caroline Rusterholz is a Wellcome Trust Research Fellow at the University of Cambridge. She has worked on the history of birth control and sexuality in Britain, France and Switzerland. Abstract:  This paper uses the recordings of sexual counselling sessions carried out by Dr Joan Malleson, a birth control activist […]

Seminar – Raising awareness about Hepatitis B and its vaccine

Lara Marks (UCL Department of Science and Technology Studies) According to the World Health Organisation more than 3.5% of the world’s population are chronically infected with the hepatitis B virus (HBV), the tenth leading cause of death globally. Few people, however, realise the HBV is 50-100 times more infectious than HIV and just how easily […]

Seminar Postponed – Relief and Regret: Fifty Years of Women’s Voices in British Abortion Activism.

We are sorry for the short notice, but due to Illness this seminar is postponed. Clare Parker (University of Kent) The five decades since the passage of the Abortion Act in 1967 have been marked by continuous debates about abortion laws and service provision. Nearly fifty attempts have been made in parliament to amend the […]

Seminar – The emotional politics of family planning campaigns in 1970s and 1980s Britain.

Katie Jones (University of Birmingham). In 1984, the Family Planning Association of Great Britain (FPA) launched its year-long ‘Men Too’ campaign to encourage greater male involvement in family planning and personal relationships that represented a wider shift towards promoting ‘male responsibility’ for contraception in the 1980s. In this paper I argue that ‘Men Too’ formed […]

Seminar – From pleasure to moral panic? Tracing the history of gay men, sex and drugs

Maurice Nangington (University of Manchester) Gay men, sex, and drugs have long been co-conspirators. However, the representations and significations of them have altered radically across different cultures and historical time points. Because of the limited writing about their intersection before the decriminalisations/legalisation of homosexuality in The West, this talk will focus on how gay men, […]

Seminar – “Literature and Medicine in the Field: Contemporary Medical Humanities in Practice in Malawi” – POSTPONED!

Chisomo Kalinga (University of Edinburgh) (Abstract to follow) Wednesday, 24th January 2018, 12.45 pm – 2.00 pm Venue: LG24, Keppel Street Building

Seminar: An Authoritarian History of International Health: Public Health and International Expertise in Franco’s Spain

David Brydan (Birkbeck, University of London) This history of international health has tended to focus on the work of international organisations, western philanthropic groups, and experts from the liberal states of Europe and North America. Liberal internationalists undoubtedly played a key role in the modern history of international health, but they only form part of […]

Seminar – Negotiating immunity: Mass vaccination in modern China and East Asia, 1945-75

Mary Brazelton (University of Cambridge) This paper surveys mass immunization programs across East Asia after the Second World War, with a focus on the People’s Republic of China (PRC). After 1949, the newly established PRC provided mandatory, universal, and free vaccination in nation-wide campaigns against a variety of diseases, including but not limited to smallpox […]

Seminar – Chaos on the Ground: schistosomiasis control in China, 1950-1964

Xun Zhou (University of Essex) The anti-schistosomiasis campaign (from 1950s to the long 1970s) in Mao’s China was the most celebrated showcase of the People’s Republic of China’s socialist war on diseases. It was the epitome of the communist state’s political commitment to transform the backward (synonymous as the diseased) countryside through education as well […]

Seminar: How is Australia responding to calls to allow medical uses of cannabis?

Wayne Hall (Centre for Youth Substance Abuse Research (CYSAR), University of Queensland) There is reasonable evidence that THC, the active ingredient in cannabis, is moderately effective in treating nausea and vomiting and in stimulating appetite adversely affected by disease or medical treatment. There is also some evidence that cannabinoids are effective in treating acute and […]

Seminar: Fighting Fire with Fire. The Danysz Virus, Plague Prevention and early 20th century Epidemiology

Lukas Engelmann (University of Edinburgh) In 1890, the physician and pioneer bacteriologist Friedrich Loeffler of the German hygienic institute in Greifswald observed a strange pattern of high mortality in his white research mice. Experiments exposed a new bacterial agent, in shape and appearance similar to bacillus typhi, but seemingly harmless to most organisms except small […]

Seminar: HIV and AIDS in English and Irish prisons: a policy overview

Virginia Berridge and Janet Weston (Centre for History in Public Health, LSHTM) The emergence of HIV and AIDS in the 1980s presented unexpected challenges to governments around the world, prompting urgent debate about the role of the state in protecting the health of its citizens. Quarantines, national surveillance, mandatory testing, large-scale health education initiatives, and […]

‘Hitting the High Notes’, a collaboration with BBC Radio 3 to examine the heroin use of jazz musicians in post war America. Dr Sally Marlow, King’s College London, in conversation with Rami Tzabar, BBC Radio Science

Image: ‘Jam session by patients at the Narcotic Farm’ © 1951, Library of Congress, Prints & Photographs Division, NYWT&S Collection As part of LSHTM Week, the Centre for History in Public Health will be showcasing Dr Sally Marlow, public engagement fellow from Kings College London. Sally came to one of the Centre’s film showings of […]

Seminar – The Political, the Emotional and the Therapeutic: The Women’s Movement and Mental Health Activism in England, c. 1969-1995.

Kate Mahoney (University of Essex). Historians tracing the influence of feminist ideas on mental health in late twentieth-century Britain have focused on Women’s Liberation Movement (WLM) critiques of psychology, psychiatry and psychotherapy, as popularised by Betty Friedan’s The Feminine Mystique and Germaine Greer’s The Female Eunuch. This paper, however, explores how and why some women’s […]

Seminar – Itching to Serve: Entomology, Infection, and the Experimental Citizen in Wartime Britain, 1939-1945

Dave Saunders (Queen Mary, University of London) During the Second World War, British medical researchers warned of an imminent invasion of the national body by an army of lice, mites, and other unwanted parasites. With the pandemics of the Great War still fresh in the minds of many public health officials, some predicted that vector-borne […]

First Time Around: The Rise and Fall of ‘Universal Health Coverage’ as a Goal of International Health Politics, 1942–1952

Martin Gorsky and Christopher Sirrs, Centre for History in Public Health, LSHTM Universal health coverage (UHC) remains a key ambition of international health in the twenty-first century, though the means to achieve it, especially in low-income countries (LICs), is still hotly debated. The UN Sustainable Development Goals of 2015 have presented a fresh opportunity to […]

Management and Construction of the Spanish hospital system from the perspective of economic history: between public and private sectors

Jerònia Pons-Pons (Universidad de Sevilla) and Margarita Vilar-Rodriguez (Universidad de A Coruña) This paper aims to analyze the historical construction of the network of health infrastructures in Spain during the Franco dictatorship (1939-1975) from very different areas both public and private. The first part provides a first statistical progress of the major infrastructure before approving […]

Public-private partnerships in health: exploring origins and implications

Linsey McGoey (University of Essex) This paper draws on the history of ideas in order to investigate early 20th-century shifts in economic thought that have led to widespread 21st-century assumptions about the effectiveness of private-sector actors in improving health outcomes. Firstly, I explore the legacy of the ‘socialist calculation debate,’ with particular reference to the […]

‘The Cost of Living and Dying’: Richard Titmuss, Population, and Population Health, ca.1935-1945

John Stewart (Wellcome Unit for the History of Medicine, Oxford) This paper examines Richard Titmuss’s analysis of population and population health in the early part of his career, from 1935 to 1945.  In the mid-1930s Titmuss was relatively unknown but the evidence shows that he was already interested in matters of population and population health.  […]

Resistance – a story of antibiotics, bacteria, and public health in Britain (1935-1998)

  (Co-hosted  with the Antimicrobial Resistance Centre) Claas Kirchhelle (University of Oxford) Rising bacterial resistance against antibiotics is one of the most pressing health issues of the 21st century. Decision makers at the international, transnational, and national levels all agree that antibiotic use has to be reformed and resistance reduced. However, there remains considerable disagreement […]

Disability Goes Global: The Repercussions of the International Year of Disabled Persons (1981) for Global Health

  (co-hosted with the International Centre for Evidence in Disability (ICED) Monika Baár (Leiden University) 1981 was designated by the United Nations the International Year of Disabled Persons, to be followed by the International Decade of Disabled Persons (1982-1993). It was the first occasion to place disability into a global context by endorsing it authoritatively […]

Health benefits through Christian conversion? Lessons from a Ugandan hospital registry, 1908-1970

Felix Meier zu Selhausen (University of Sussex) Shane Doyle (University of Leeds) Felix Meier zu Selhausen (University of Sussex) Jacob Weisdorf (University of Southern Denmark) What were the incentives for Africans, in terms of health and education, of converting to Christianity? We use patient registers from the earliest mission hospital in rural Uganda, Toro Hospital, […]

The History of AIDS, Global Health and Brazil, 1996-2005

Marcos Cueto (Casa de Oswaldo Cruz, Fiocruz, Rio de Janeiro) During the past few decades, Brazil has had a complex and contradictory relationship with Global Health marked by achievements but also by discontinuity and fragmentation. In 1996, it was a pioneer in providing free access of antiretrovirals for HIV/AIDS challenging pharmaceutical companies. The Brazilian AIDS […]

‘You must relax’: Developing health expertise in postwar Britain

Ayesha Nathoo (University of Exeter) Therapeutic relaxation practices proliferated in the postwar decades, promoted by practitioners as a means of enhancing wellbeing, preventing ill-health and treating a wide array of conditions. This paper investigates the sites and means of relaxation instruction in Britain – from radio and television programmes to group classes and self-help books. […]

From ‘terribly pitiful’ to ‘red badges of courage’? Sexual health and sexually transmitted infections among men who had sex with men before HIV

Richard McKay (Department of History and Philosophy of Science, University of Cambridge) Dr McKay will discuss preliminary findings from the ‘Before HIV’ project, an ongoing historical research study funded by the Wellcome Trust. The project investigates the mid-twentieth-century history of sexual health and sexually transmitted infections (STIs) among gay men and other men who had […]

Pathologising pubic hair: the practice of pre-delivery shaving and hygienic hair-modifying behaviours in twentieth and twenty-first century Britain

Laura Cofield (University of Sussex) In 2014, a Mintel survey identified that eighty-three per cent of men and women agreed that public hair removal made them feel more hygienic. This is despite a public call to end pubic hair removal by physicians such as Emily Gibson (M.D) who has described the hairless trend as ‘a […]

A Genealogy of Prohibition: Life and Politics of Drugs in Modern Iran (1909-2015)

Maziyar Ghiabi (St Antony’s College, Oxford University) Persians ‘had rather go without their Dinners, than their Pipes…’ wrote the famous French voyageur Chardin after one of his travels in Persia. This statement holds true of the widespread use of smoking tobacco and other substances in Iran, since the late 16th Century. Given that opium (taryak) […]

From patients to consumers: a history of pregnancy testing in Britain

Jesse Olszynko-Gryn (Wellcome Trust Fellow) Today, home pregnancy testing is completely taken for granted. It is implicated in personal decisions and public discourses around all aspects of reproduction, from teen pregnancy and abortion to the biological clock. And yet, only fifty years ago, the majority of women waited not minutes, but months to find out […]

Under the Covers? Commerce, Condoms and Consumers in Britain, 1880-1960

Claire Jones (Kings College London) By the 1960s, Britain was home to a booming trade in mechanical contraceptives, a trade which would have been unrecognizable one hundred years earlier. What had been a small underground network of individual sellers of ‘French Letters’ during the early half of the nineteenth century became a profitable industry, which […]

‘The plague of modern society’: newspapers and popular understanding of stress in late twentieth-century Britain

Jill Kirby University of Sussex This paper will discuss the popular discourse of stress in the late twentieth century by examining representation of the concept in a selection of national newspapers and in personal accounts of stress from the Mass Observation Project. In doing so, it illustrates continuity and change in the ways stress was […]

On Call in Africa – in War and Peace 1910-1932

Dr Tony Jewell This recently published book is based on the memoir of Dr Norman Jewell who having qualified at Trinity College Dublin was appointed to the Colonial Medical Service in Seychelles in 1910. When WW1 was declared he volunteered to join the British Army in East Africa where led the 3rd East African Field […]

POSTPONED: ‘The new medium of radio: threat and healing during the early1920s’

POSTPONED Michael Guida (Media and Cultural Studies, University of Sussex) The conditions of mass culture, mass consumption and universal suffrage of the early twentieth century raised the question in anxious professional classes of how to create an informed and cultured modern democracy, and how new forms of mass media might help in that task. The […]

‘Communicating consensus: from the Medical Officer of Health annual reports for London to an alternative history of interwar public health’

Jane Seymour (Centre for History in Public Health, LSHTM) The foundation for the current historiography of public health in the interwar period was laid in the 1980s by Jane Lewis and Charles Webster, who were largely critical of local authority medical provision. More recently, several other authors have modified this negative appraisal with more nuanced […]

The Rise of Risk: The Health and Safety Executive (HSE) and Risk Management in Twentieth Century Britain

Chris Sirrs (Centre for History in Public Health, LSHTM) Since 1974, risk assessment has become a cornerstone of British and European health and safety regulation. Under British health and safety law, employers are required to evaluate the risks generated by their systems and processes, and take commensurate steps to protect their workers against accidents and […]

Tuberculosis Control in Postcolonial South India and Beyond: Fractured Sovereignties in International Health, 1948-1960

Vivek Neelakantan (Indian Institute of Technology Madras (IITM), Chennai) Between 1948 and 1960, South India and Southeast Asia emerged as global laboratories for tuberculosis control. This article attempts to situate tuberculosis control of these two regions within the broader context of international health. It investigates the unique ways in which tuberculosis control in Madras state […]

“How (not to) write the history of refugees”

Jessica Reinisch (Birkbeck, University of London) Faced with reports of current migration into Europe, many commentators are searching for historical comparisons and precedents. Both the Kindertransport of 1938 and the Hungarian refugee crisis of 1956 have been misleadingly cited as precedents to be emulated by policymakers today. However, these comparisons are stripped of their context, […]

“Bludgeoned into Accepting What is Good for Us”: Fear, Risk, Fluoridation and the Home in Post-War Britain

Glen O’Hara (Oxford Brookes University) As rationing came to an end in the 1950s, and tooth decay from sugary drinks and sweets became a topic of great concern for doctors and dentists, UK policymakers looked to US experiments with fluoridising the water supply for a glimpse of a scientific future that would help them escape […]

‘Communicating Cholera: Nineteenth-Century Epidemiology and the Scientific Image’

Amanda Sciampicone (University of Warwick) The mysterious and deadly nature of cholera’s epidemiology compelled Victorian medics to investigate the disease. Increasingly, medics concentrated on tropical climates and unusual meteorological phenomena as the cause of cholera’s morbidity and spread, utilizing scientific diagrams, graphs, and maps to elucidate their arguments. In attempting to visualize cholera, these images […]

Dirty secrets, dirty laundry: The functions of secrecy in discourses of Victorian women’s drinking

Jennifer Wallis (St Anne’s College, University of Oxford) In the late nineteenth-century British press, the ‘lady secret drinker’ was an enigmatic, if disturbing, figure. Fashionable but foolish, she was used to illustrate the risks of broadening access to alcohol via changing licensing laws, as well as woman’s supposedly inherent ‘deceptive’ potential. Yet, at the same […]

Screening the National Health Service: Approaching a Cultural History through Moving Pictures

Jane Hand (University of Warwick) This paper examines the use of moving images as a fruitful source for considering the cultural history of the NHS. It focuses on the film programme of the National Health Campaign of 1948 to argue that these promotional films constructed particular understandings of postwar modernity that coded the individual health […]

Did the government lack ‘common sense’? Coventry’s 1957 Polio Epidemic

Gareth Millward (Centre for History in Public Health, LSHTM) The arrival of Jonas Salk’s polio vaccine in 1955 had given public health officials a major boost in the fight against polio. But in Britain, concerns its safety had led to supply problems. In the middle of this crisis, Coventry suffered one of its worst ever […]

Developing health – the health of development: Health and the making of the Millennium Development Goals

Iris Borowy (Aachen University) For decades, there has been broad consensus that poverty and “underdevelopment” are not good for health but extensive controversy regarding what exactly constitutes “development” and how can it be improved to serve population health. The Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) evolved through a competition between two perspectives on development: one that sees […]

Venereological education among medical undergraduates in England, 1890-1914

Anne Hanley (New College, University of Oxford) In 1867 James Lane and George Gascoyen, surgeons to the London Lock Hospital, compiled a report on their experiments with a new and controversial treatment. The procedure, known as ‘syphilisation’, saw patients be inoculated with infective matter taken from a primary syphilitic ulcer or the artificial sores produced […]

Recent cannabis policy experiments in the USA: What are they and what are their implications?

Wayne Hall, Professor of Addiction Policy (National Addiction Centre, Kings College London, and Centre for Youth Substance Abuse Research University of Queensland) This paper describes the recent proposals to legalise recreational cannabis use in the USA. It places them within a historical context of trends in cannabis use among young people in developed countries like […]


           A half-day symposium by the Vaccine Centre and Centre for History in Public Health With guest speakers Anne Hardy, Dora Vargha, Tracey Chantler and Pauline Paterson Anne Hardy is an honorary professor at the Centre for History in Public Health and will be speaking about smallpox vaccination in the 19th century. […]

Misfits of deinstitutionalisation ? How competing ideologies contributed to chaotic service provision for mentally-ill criminal offenders in Auckland, New Zealand, 1972-1988

  Kate Prebble, PhD and Claire Gooder, PhD (School of Nursing, University of Auckland) Mentally-ill criminal offenders have historically been shunted between justice and health systems. In Aotearoa/New Zealand in the late-20th century, fluctuating policy positions had devastating consequences for forensic psychiatric patients, their families and members of the public.  Murders by ex-psychiatric patients, deaths […]

Improving maternal health on a global scale: A historic perspective on the work of WHO and partners

  Julianne Weis (University of Oxford, Wellcome Unit for the History of Medicine) The Millennium Development goals expire this year (2015). Some goals, including achieving universal primary education, are on track to be reached, while others, most notoriously MDG 5, to improve maternal health, is lagging far behind. Huge gains in reducing maternal mortality have […]

Psychiatric Pasts: Looking Back in Female Sexual Dysfunction and the Diagnostic and Statistical Manuals

  Katherine Angel (Queen Mary University of London) Female Sexual Dysfunction’ is a term that was introduced into the American Psychiatric Association’s Diagnostic and Statistical Manual (DSM) in its third edition of 1980. The DSM-III is widely glossed as having marked a turning away from psychoanalytic psychiatry in the United States, and towards a newly […]

Feminism, Femininity, and (In)Fertility: Popular Discourses on Gender and Reproduction in the 1970s Britain and Beyond

  Tracey Loughran (Cardiff University) During the 1970s, second wave feminists argued that control of reproduction was essential to women’s liberation. In practice, however, feminist assertions of ‘the right to choose’ usually focussed on the right not to have children. The feminist press rarely engaged with infertility in the 1970s. Individual feminists reported uncomprehending, unsympathetic, […]

Shadows of concern. Mammography and breast cancer diagnosis post-1950

  Yolanda Eraso (London Metropolitan University) This paper will discuss historical developments of breast cancer diagnosis from the 1950s onwards, with particular focus on mammography and the emergence of new ‘signs’ related to the disease such as microcalcifications and breast density. It will analyse how radiological images, pathologists’ classifications and methods of standardisation (BI-RADS) have […]

Representations of the Great Stink of 1858 in Punch

  Clare Horrocks (Liverpool John Moores University) Mr Punch’s consistent campaign for sanitary reform from 1841 to 1858 and the year of the Great Stink addressed an issue that many of the middle classes were unwilling to confront or discuss.  The magazine’s verbal visual wit challenges definitions of comedy and humour with its more ludic […]

Making a technology of public health: folic acid and pre-conceptional nutrition in Britain in the 1980s and 1990s

  Salim Al-Gailani (Cambridge University) Since the early-1990s, governments and health organizations around the world have encouraged women to make sure they get enough of the B-vitamin folic acid before and during pregnancy. The expert consensus is that women with diets deficient in folic acid are at increased risk of bearing a child with a […]

The Globalization of Chronic Disease

  George Weisz (McGill University) In Chronic Disease in the 20th Century: A History (2014), I argue that “chronic disease” as a central policy concept (lumping together numerous disparate conditions) developed in the United States in the early 20th century, reaching a peak in the 1950s and 1960s. European nations tended to be concerned with specific […]

‘Challenging the stereotype of the mamma italiana. Second-wave feminist approaches to maternity and childbirth in Italy’

  Andrea Hajek (University of Glasgow) One of the most common stereotypes about Italy is that of la mamma, the mother. In spite of a steadily declining birth rate, the myth of the mother continues to be strong, due in part to the Fascist idea that maternity was woman’s natural destiny, an idea which was […]

Cannabis policy experiments in the USA and Uruguay: What are they? What are their implications?

  Wayne Hall (Professor of Addiction Policy, National Addiction Centre, Kings College London, and, Director, Centre for Youth Substance Abuse Research, University of Queensland) My paper will describe the recent policy experiments to legalise the recreational use of cannabis in two states in the USA – Colorado and Washington – and in Uruguay. It places […]

Hiding in the Pub to Cutting the Cord? Men’s involvement in childbirth since the 1950s in Britain

  Laura King (University of Leeds) Once deemed ‘unmanly’, the presence of men at their children’s births is now understood to be near essential.  Whilst the Daily Mail in 1960 noted that ‘One in ten fathers is now in at the birth’, and a BBC programme of 1964 suggested a husband’s presence could bring about […]

Who speaks about illness? A long history of Migraine

  Katherine Foxhall (University of Leicester) Migraine is an extremely common disorder; it affects around 15% of women, and 6% of men. It is included by the WHO in its Top 20 causes of years lived with disability, but is widely under-diagnosed and under-treated. In this seminar I look at the long history of migraine. […]

When polio became global: a pre-history of the Global Polio Eradication Initiative (GPEI)

(Joint with the Vaccine Centre) Dora Vargha (Postdoctoral Research Associate, Birkbeck, University of London) Although the Global Polio Eradication Initiative was launched in 1988, the idea of eradicating the disease appeared already in the late 1950s. In 1959 Mikhail Chumakov, Soviet colleague of Albert Sabin advocated the new oral live virus polio vaccine as capable […]

A seminar on the ethics and pragmatics of policies towards the use of ‘e cigarettes’

  Professor Wayne Hall (University of Queensland, Australia) Should Australia lift its ban on electronic nicotine devices? Reflections on the ethics and implications of Australian policy debates Over the past 30 years the daily smoking prevalence among Australian adults has declined to 16% thanks to: higher tobacco taxes; bans on cigarette advertising; smoke-free policies in […]

‘Bad Science?: The challenges of UK specialist reporting and the future of science, health, and environment news’

Andy Williams (Cardiff University) Science news is not formed in a social, economic, or cultural vacuum. It is written by people at news organisations which are cutting staff and investing fewer resources into news production than previously. Full discussions of science news in the UK must be situated in the context of the economic and […]

‘Entangled Histories: The foundation and early establishment of public health institutions in Britain and Europe around 1900’

  Axel Huentelmann (Johannes Gutenberg Universitaet) In the decades around 1900 a variety of public health and bacterio­logical research institutions had been founded all over the (West­ern) world: the Prussian Institute for Infectious Diseases, a net­work of (French) Pasteur Institutes, the Liverpool and London School of Tropical Medicine (and Hygiene), the Institute for Preventive Health¾to […]

What have we learned about the adverse health effects of cannabis use in the past 20 years?

  Wayne Hall (The University of Queensland Centre for Clinical Research) This paper discusses what research has shown about the adverse health effects of cannabis in the past 20 years. In 1994 there were very few epidemiological studies of the health effects of cannabis and the literature was dominated by (1) animal studies of the […]

‘..such a fine net that no individual can fall through it from good health into ill health’. The campaign for Social Medicine in Britain during the 1940s’

  Sheena Evans (Senior Visiting Scholar of Murray Edwards College, Cambridge) Very little has been written about the campaign for social medicine in the early period of the 1940s. What there is tends to cover the limited field of medical education. In fact, the campaign was much broader than that, and its lasting effect was […]

‘“It’s a truism that public health is a purchasable commodity”: Municipal healthcare in Inter-war Belfast’

  Sean Lucey (Queen’s University Belfast) Municipal medicine and public health has been seen as a failure in Belfast and Northern Ireland/ North of Ireland prior to the introduction of the National Health Service. The recent British historiography on the performance of public health providers, particularly in the municipal sectors, has challenged similar negative understandings. […]

From Ague to Pyrexia and from Smallpox to Heart Disease: A General Overview of Causes of Death in Scotland 1855-1955

  Eilidh Garrett (Cambridge University) (Click here for abstract) Click here for podcast Wednesday, 11th December 2013, 12.45 pm – 2.00 pm Venue: Lucas Room, Keppel Street Building

Producing a Population Laboratory: The Khanna Study, Harvard School of Public Health and the ‘Epidemiology of Population’. 1953-1960

  Rebecca Williams (Warwick University) (Click here for abstract) Click here for podcast Wednesday, 4th December 2013, 12.45 pm – 2.00 pm Venue: Jerry Morris B, Tavistock Place

Why NGOs Fail at Preventing Sex Trafficking in Mainland Southeast Asia

Trude Jacobsen (Northern Illinois University) (Click here for abstract)  Click here for podcast 27th November 2013

Why did infants die in the city? The different mortality experience of infants and foundings in Madrid in the early 20th century

  Barbara Revuelta Eugercios (Institute National d’Etudes Demographiques (INED), Paris)   Click here for podcast 20th November 2013 12.45 pm-2.00 pm

The Origins of Rapid Population Growth in Great Lakes East Africa

  Shane Doyle (Leeds University) (Click here for abstract) Click here for podcast Wednesday, 6th November 2013, 12.45 pm – 2.00 pm Venue: Jerry Morris B, Tavistock Place

Infant Mortality by Social Status in Georgian London

  The Centre for History in Public Health and the Population Studies Group presents: A Seminar Series in Historical Demography Romola Davenport (Cambridge Group for the History of Population and Social Structure) (Click here for abstract) Click here for podcast 23rd October 2013

Fathers and Childbirth

  The Centre for History in Public Health presents: (Joint seminar with the MARCH Centre) Linda Bryder (Auckland University) (Click here for abstract) Click here for podcast 8th October 2013

Exploring possible futures of Tobacco Control in Austrialia: High tech, low tech and no tech

  (Joint seminar with the Centre for Research on Drugs and Health Behaviour) Wayne Hall (NHMRC Australia Fellow, and Coral Gartner, NHMRC Post-doctoral Fellow, The University of Queensland Centre for Clinical Research)  podcast 1 May 2013

A Genealogy of the Gift: Blood Donation and Altruism in an Age of Strangers

  Nick Whitfield (McGill University) abstract 7th March 2013

Urban hospitals before the NHS: finance, specialisation and integration in provincial England

  Barry Doyle (University of Huddersfield)) abstract podcast 6th February 2013

Preventing tuberculosis using mass radiography – an outstanding success or an anti-social failure

  (Joint seminar with the TB Centre) Clare Leeming Latham (Birmingham University) abstract  30th January 2013

“A mere ritual or incantation?”: Developing local disinfection policy in late nineteenth century England

  Rebecca Whyte (University of Cambridge) abstract podcast 23rd January 2013

Did we really want a National Health Service? Popular Opinion and Patients’ Views on Existing Voluntary Hospital Provision

  (Joint seminar with PHP Health Systems and Policy) Nick Hayes (Nottingham Trent University) abstract podcast 16th January 2013

Pubs and Patriots: The Drink Crisis during the First World War

  Robert Duncan abstract  podcast 21st November 2012

Breaking the Monopoly System: American influence on the British decision to prohibit opium smoking and end its Asian monopolies, 1939-1943

  John Collins (London School of Economics) abstract podcast 31st October 2012

Moderate Drinking Before The Unit: Medicine and Life Assurance in Britain and the US, c.1860-1930

  James Kneale (University College London) abstract  podcast 24th October 2012

W(h)ither International Drug Control? Learning from the UNGASS Decade

  (Joint seminar with the Centre for Research on Drugs and Health Behaviour) David Bewley-Taylor (Swansea University) abstract  podcast 10 October 2012