Perspectives

Perspectives is an ever-growing library of podcasts, videos, and essays on the history of science, technology and medicine, along with resources for further learning and opportunities to engage in ongoing conversations.

Perspectives provides discussions with leading scholars, interviews with recent authors, and archival highlights from the exceptional collections of Consortium member institutions.

 

Watch Peter Sachs Collopy, Michael Chwe, Ruth Lewin Sime, and Robert Marc Friedman and they discuss justice and injustice in science, with specific reference to the "Meitner Scandal" and the re-evaluation of Robert Millikan's troubling legacy. Susan Lindee moderates the panel, and Sue V. Rosser provides commentary and discussion.


 

Listen to this ongoing series of perspectives on the history of scientific racism and "race science" from scholars in the humanities and social sciences. There are currently eight episodes in the series that investigate the intersections of science and race in the United States, Latin America, Western Europe, South Africa, the Middle East, and Australia. 


 

Courtney Thompson and Alicia Puglionesi discuss their books on the history of phrenology and psychical science in nineteenth- and early twentieth-century America. 


 

Adam R. Shapiro examines the Scopes Trial and the antievolution movement in America from a new vantage point, turning to the early twentieth century science textbook industry and push for compulsory education to understand the battle over what was taught in America's schools.


 
Stephen Weldon discusses the history of the humanist movement in America and the ways in which its "scientific spirit" became central to American liberal culture and values.


 

Emily Merchant exlores the history of population growth modeling and the intellectual and ideological battles over the concept of overpopulation. 


 

Rachel Walker discusses race and science in early America, using archival images pertaining to phrenology and physiognomy to discuss the ways these techniques were used to prop up existing social hierarchies, and also to subvert them. 


 

Bert Hansen guides us through his donated collection of images of medical treatments and technologies found in nineteenth century mass media publications. 


 

Follow along with Professor Mary Fissell as she discusses her research on Aristotle's Masterpiece, a late 17th century English sex and midwifery manual. 


 

Bert Hansen guides us through his donated collection of images of medical treatments and technologies found in nineteenth century mass media publications. 


 
Join us as we speak to historian Wendy Gonaver about her research on the history of the Eastern Lunatic Asylum in Williamsburg, Virginia and the practice of psychiatry in the pre- and post-Civil War American South. 


 
Listen to historian Audra Wolfe as she examines how science was defined and used as a tool of cultural diplomacy and international relations during the Cold War. 


 

Listen to historian Susan Lindee as she discusses how the military establishment transformed science and technology, interrogates why the victims of technologies of war are often left out of our historical accounts, and questions whether growing defense budgets are in society's best interests. 


 

Scholars Dean Jamison and Abdo Yazbeck discuss the creation and impact of the World Bank's World Development Report 1993: Investing in Health, an influential document in the history of global health that they helped to create. They discuss and answer questions about the economization of health, the creation of the DALY measure, and the benefits and downsides of the World Bank's role in international health policy. 


 

Jonson Miller explores the development of the Virginia Military Institute and the engineering profession in the Antebellum United States. Miller delves into the ways in which VMI was a node in the struggle for political representation among lower- and middle-class white men, while explicitly excluding women and black men from its egalitarian mission. 


 

Follow along with Professor Mary Fissell as she discusses her research on Aristotle's Masterpiece, a late 17th century English sex and midwifery manual. 


 

Scholars Deirdre Cooper Owens and Lynn Roberts discuss how slavery and the history of reproductive medicine intersect, the impact of medical racism on Black birthing people, and recent efforts to address racial inequalities in maternal mortality and morbidity.

 


Presidents of the 3 Societies

Join the Presidents of the History of Science Society, the Society for the History of Technology, and the American Association for the History of Medicine as they discuss the current and future roles of the three most important organizations in our field. Jan Golinski (HSS), Tom Misa (SHOT), and Keith Wailoo (AAHM) discuss how their organizations are faring, how they are changing, and how we can participate in, benefit from, and help to shape them.


 

Listen to this series of perspectives on the COVID-19 pandemic from renowned scholars in the humanities and social sciences. There are currently twelve episodes in the series, looking at COVID-19 and its historical antecedents from diverse viewpoints and in places such as India, Brazil, China, Iran, South Africa, and the United States. 


 

Beginning with an in-depth look at Johannes Stradanus's Nova Reperta, explore the interplay between invention, social change, and economic development from the Renaissance to today.

 


 

Joseph Martin tells the story of how solid state physics challenged and redefined some of the core ideals of American physics, and in the process played an essential role in sustaining the prestige physics enjoyed in Cold War American society.


 

Cameron Strang takes American scientific thought and discoveries away from the learned societies, museums, and teaching halls of the Northeast and puts the production of knowledge about the natural world in the context of competing empires and an expanding republic in the Gulf South.


 

Phrenology was the most popular mental science of the Victorian age. From American senators to Indian social reformers, this new mental science found supporters around the globe.


 

Dóra Vargha uses a series of polio epidemics in communist Hungary to understand the response to a global public health emergency in the midst of the Cold War.

 

 


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