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Cultural History of the NHS (HI34D)

Tutors: Dr Jennifer Crane, Dr Jane Hand, and Dr Gareth Millward
Office: H310, third floor of the Humanities Building
Office Hours: 1-2PM Tuesdays, 1-2PM Fridays, H448a / H451
Seminars: Friday 10-12, H0.05

The idea that the British people believe in the NHS and that it has a meaning reaching back to its foundation in 1948 is deeply influential and politically significant. It is often remarked that the NHS is now the closest thing to a national religion in modern Britain. Yet historical examination of this belief, and of whether and how meaning has in fact changed over time, remain remarkably under-explored. Indeed, there is a striking contrast between the common claims about the centrality of the NHS to British life and identity, and its marginal position in most existing social and cultural histories of post-war Britain. This 30 CATS final-year undergraduate Special Subject module provides students with the opportunity to be involved in efforts to develop our first cultural history of the NHS.