Women and Modern Medicine

Publication Year



Edited by Lawrence I. Conrad, Ph.D. 1981

Modernising scientific medicine emerged in the nineteenth century as an increasingly powerful agent of change in a context of complex social developments. Women's lives and expectations in particular underwent a transformation in the years after 1870 as education, employment opportunities and political involvement extended their personal and gender horizons. For women, medicine came to offer not just treatment in the event of illness but the possibilities of participation in medical practise, of shaping social policies and political understandings, and of altering the biological imperatives of their bodies. The essays in this collection explore various ways in which women responded to these challenges and opportunities and sought to use the power of modernising Western medicine to further their individual and gender interests.


Macho medicine / Ann Dally -- "Colonizing women": female medical practice in colonial India, 1880-1890 / Anne Witz -- From bedpan to revolution: Qui Jin and Western nursing / Bridie Andrews -- "Run by women (mainly) for women": Medical Women's Hospitals in Britain, 1866-1948 / Mary Ann Elston -- Women doctors and gender identity in Weimar Germany, 1819-1933 / Cornelie Usborne -- A suitable job for a woman: women doctors and birth control to the inception of the NHS / Lesley A. Hall -- Listening to the Ga: Cicely Williams' discovery of kwashiorkor on the Gold Caost / Jennifer Stanton --Smooth, speedy, painless, and still midwife delivered?: the Dutch midwife and childbirth technology in the early twentieth century / Hilary Marland -- Ergot to ergometrine: an obstetric renaissance? / E.M. Tansey -- "Andromeda freed from her chains": attitudes towards women and the oral contraceptive pill, 1950-1970 / Lara Marks -- Pioneers of infertility treatment / Naomi Pfeffer -- An anatomy of desire: gender and difference in sex therapy / Cassandra Lorius

Series Title
Wellcome Institute series in the history of medicine; Clio medica (Amsterdam, Netherlands)
Series Volume
Amsterdam and Atlanta, GA
Cloth: 9789042008717; paper: 9789042008618; ebook: 9789004333390