Seminars in the History of Science, Medicine and Technology – Week 2, 21st October

Next Monday’s seminar will be given by Emeritus Professor Peter Cryle & Dr Elizabeth Stephens (University of Queensland), who will be speaking about ‘Normality: measuring practices and devices’.

‘During the nineteenth and twentieth centuries there emerged a set of practices that served to produce knowledge about populations. One of the key ways in which this was done was by measuring human bodies. That is how, before engaging in battle, conscripts to Napoleon’s army made a contribution to the state by the compulsory provision of their measurements, as they effectively became, not just cannon fodder, but fodder for statistical knowledge. Once aggregated and averaged, their measurements could serve a range of governmental purposes, including the study of regional differences in nutrition and hygiene, as well as hypotheses about “racial” differences within and between regions. A version of this general story of governmental normalisation can be found in the work of Michel Foucault. But summary accounts of normalisation indebted to Foucault tend to neglect what he saw as a double movement whereby a dynamic of homogenisation was accompanied by a dynamic of individuation and differentiation. A conceptual bridge between these two kinds of normalisation, and a way of understanding their interdependence, can be provided by studying the historical emergence of standard clothing sizes, which served both to produce and to manage individuality.’

When? Monday 21st October 2019, 16:00.

Where? History Faculty Lecture Theatre, George Street, Oxford

This lecture has been organised by the Oxford Centre for the History of Science, Medicine and Technology as part of the Seminars in the History of Science, Medicine and Technology series.

All welcome to attend!

Seminars in the History of Science, Medicine and Technology – Week 1, 14th October

This Monday’s seminar will be given by Dr Harry Wu (University of Hong Kong), who will be speaking on ‘Seeing trauma: from invisible reality to emotional imagery’.

‘In the Hollywood film, Billy Lynn’s Long Halftime Walk, the director Ang Lee explores the effect of combat exemplifies the complexities of war trauma by his experiment in constructing reality with RealD technology. Such “over-pursuit” reveals the century-long efforts cineastes and experimental psychologists have been trying to unravel. Since mid-19th century, psychologists have been using image technologies to visualise the “stigmata” of trauma in individual’s mind. These images, produced by photography and videography, have been used not only to study mental illnesses, but also as an archiving method and a medium to deliver knowledge.

In this presentation, I first survey the history of the documentation of traumatized soldiers to look at the efforts made by filmmakers to better capture the manifestation of trauma in front of their camera. And then I refer to scientists’ attempts at developing methods, including emotional mental imagery, to better understand the neurophysiological mechanism of PTSD from 1970s onwards. Finally, I argue, a more complete picture of trauma in images, including various individuals’ conceptualization and interpretation of trauma and how the narrative forms of interpretation produce meaning for those who experience the events, will only transpire when one finally ignores the excessive quest of the cinematic reality or imagery.’

When? Monday 14th October 2019, 16:00.

Where? History Faculty Lecture Theatre, George Street, Oxford

This lecture has been organised by the Oxford Centre for the History of Science, Medicine and Technology.

All welcome to attend! For more information on this term’s seminars see the Unit’s webpage.

Opening hours w/b 14th October

To our new students: Welcome! To our returning students: Welcome back!

We hope you have a wonderful Michaelmas term.

Our opening hours in Week 1 will be:

Monday: Unstaffed
Tuesday: 2.15pm-5pm
Wednesday: 2.15pm-4.30pm
Thursday and Friday: 2.15pm-5pm

The Library’s books on the history of medicine are available to search on SOLO, or you can view our newest arrivals on LibraryThing! New readers are always welcome; if you would like to visit please contact us by email or phone to arrange your appointment.

Have a splendid weekend!

A sailor being toasted by a group of his friends in a tavern as he is about to depart for New Zealand. Pencil, ink and wash, by S. Jenner. Credit: Wellcome CollectionCC BY

Ch-ch-ch-ch-Changes!

We are excited to announce that as of today, 1st October 2019, the Wellcome Unit Library will officially be known as the History of Medicine Library!

We ask that you bear with us in the process of changing our name in our various online spaces – this blog and our webpages – however, our Twitter handle and our LibraryThing pages have already been updated! Do follow us at @HistMedLibOx in both places Twitter LibraryThing

Our new email address is historyofmedicine@bodleian.ox.ac.uk  which is already live!

We would also like to welcome our new Library Assistant, George Kiddy, to the History of Medicine Library! Once George has settled in, and the usual flurry of the beginning of Michaelmas Term in Oxford is over, George will be staffing the library 2.15-5pm Monday-Friday (4.30pm on Wednesdays). Do keep an eye on the blog here for weekly updates on our opening hours for the rest of term.

A Medical Student at his desk

So long, farewell…

Today our Library Assistant for the past two years, Mary, leaves the unit library for a new job as Senior Library Assistant with our colleagues at the Radcliffe Camera! We are incredibly sad to lose her cheery and helpful presence around the library, but wish her all the best in her new post – we’re sure she will be fantastic!A wife sending her husband away on holiday in order to pursue an affair with a "nerve specialist" who has got the husband out of the way by recommending a change of scene for him. Colour process print, c. 1920.

Vacation Opening Hours: July & August 2019

During the Long Vacation, the Wellcome Unit Library will be staffed at the following times:

Monday: CLOSED
Tuesday: 2.15pm-5pm
Wednesday: CLOSED
Thursday: 2.15pm-4.30pm
Friday: CLOSED

We will be closed from the 5th-16th August inclusive for our summer break. Any further updates to our opening hours will be advertised on the blog and Twitter. As always, if you would like to visit please contact us to arrange your appointment.

During our closed days, please note that collections for the History of Science, Medicine and Technology can also be found at:
The Radcliffe Science Library http://www.bodleian.ox.ac.uk/science
Bodleian Library Upper Reading Room http://www.bodleian.ox.ac.uk/bodley/finding-resources/rooms/urr
The History Faculty Library http://www.bodleian.ox.ac.uk/history

We wish you a wonderful summer!

 

 

 

 

Opening Hours w/b 24th June

Our opening hours next week will be:

Monday & Tuesday: 2.15pm-5pm
Wednesday & Thursday: 2.15pm-4.30pm
Friday: 2.15pm-5pm

The Library’s books on the history of medicine are available to search on SOLO, or you can view our newest arrivals on LibraryThing! New readers are always welcome; if you would like to visit please contact us by email or phone to arrange your appointment.

Have an excellent weekend!

‘A sun trap, Hailey Sanatorium, Wallingford’, A Handbook of the Open Air Treatment…for consumption and other tuberculous diseases. Credit: Wellcome Collection. CC BY

 

Opening Hours w/b 17th June

Our opening hours in Week 8 will be:

Monday & Tuesday: 2.15pm-5pm
Wednesday: 2.15pm-4.30pm
Thursday: CLOSED due to staff training
Friday: 2.15pm-5pm

The Library’s books on the history of medicine are available to search on SOLO, or you can view our newest arrivals on LibraryThing! New readers are always welcome; if you would like to visit please contact us by email or phone to arrange your appointment.

Have a splendid weekend!

Child-size protective goggles for use during ultra-violet light therapy, which was given for the treatment of skin tuberculosis (lupus vulgaris) and rickets. Credit: Science Museum, London. CC BY

 

2019 HSMT Postgraduate Conference: Ch-ch-changes in the history of science, medicine, and technology

2019 HSMT PG Conference Poster