Seminar in History of Medicine


Millions upon millions of people, especially children, die each year from preventable diseases. Meanwhile, various groups, with different models, are engaged in confronting this global health emergency—from international and national agencies like the World Health Organization and the U.S. Centers for Disease Control to private philanthropies such as the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation and Rotary International. This course will consider a core question-- How can we best work together as a global community to effectively control and eradicate preventable diseases?-- by studying both what has worked in the past and what is being done in different parts of the world today. FIVE global health campaigns have been chosen as examples: against SMALL POX (the only infectious disease to be wiped from the earth); POLIO (a disease on the verge of eradication through intense world cooperation); AIDS (a disease that has thus far eluded our efforts); and AVIAN FLU and EBOLA (the latest threats to the emerge). Students will read and discuss literature on a wide range of subjects, including the history of medicine and philanthropy, public health, and the culture of disease, while honing their writing and research skills in a two 10-12 page papers and an 800-word book review.

Covers a topic in medical history. Topics vary by semester. Does not satisfy the capstone seminar (HIST-UA 4xx) requirement for majors.

Course Information



4 Points

Term Section Instructor Schedule Location

Spring 2018

David M Oshinsky
M: 9:30 AM - 12:15 PM GCASL 261