HISTORY 234 - History of Medicine in the Western World from the 18th Century to the Present
Winter 2022, Section 001
Instruction Mode: Section 001 is  In Person (see other Sections below)
Subject: History (HISTORY)
Department: LSA History
See additional student enrollment and course instructor information to guide you in your decision making.


Requirements & Distribution:
May not be repeated for credit.
Primary Instructor:
Start/End Date:
Full Term 1/5/22 - 4/19/22 (see other Sections below)
NOTE: Drop/Add deadlines are dependent on the class meeting dates and will differ for full term versus partial term offerings.
For information on drop/add deadlines, see the Office of the Registrar and search Registration Deadlines.


"The history of medicine is, in fact, the history of humanity itself, with its ups and downs, its brave aspirations after truth and finality, its pathetic failures. The subject may be treated variously as a pageant, an array of books, a procession of characters, a succession of theories, and exposition of human ineptitude, or the very bone and marrow of cultural history." —Fielding Garrison, An Introduction to the History of Medicine

In History 234 we shall adopt each of these approaches and more. Birth, life, illness, and death are universal experiences for all of humankind. How do we think about these experiences? Who do we call to attend childbirth? Who do we call to care for the sick and the dying? The answers to these questions have been quite different for different people at different times and in different places. We will consider the perspectives of not only elite healers, but also of typical patients. We will examine the history of ideas and institutions, asking: Who has practiced medicine? How did those practitioners claim legitimacy? How have changes in medical thinking changed the practice of medicine? Sources will include primary and secondary sources readings, artwork, film, literature, and theater. There is no textbook; with the exception of two plays, all readings will be available on Canvas. The course will use specification grading, which is based on quizzes and blog posts.

Course Requirements:

Quizzes, blog postings

Class Format:

Lecture and discussion


HISTORY 234 - History of Medicine in the Western World from the 18th Century to the Present
Schedule Listing
001 (LEC)
 In Person
MW 1:00PM - 2:30PM
1/5/22 - 4/19/22
002 (DIS)
 In Person
M 3:00PM - 4:00PM
1/5/22 - 4/19/22
003 (DIS)
 In Person
Tu 11:00AM - 12:00PM
1/5/22 - 4/19/22
004 (DIS)
 In Person
Tu 12:00PM - 1:00PM
1/5/22 - 4/19/22

Textbooks/Other Materials

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Syllabi are available to current LSA students. IMPORTANT: These syllabi are provided to give students a general idea about the courses, as offered by LSA departments and programs in prior academic terms. The syllabi do not necessarily reflect the assignments, sequence of course materials, and/or course expectations that the faculty and departments/programs have for these same courses in the current and/or future terms.

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CourseProfile (Atlas)