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HI907 - Themes and Methods in Medical History

  • Module code: HI907
  • Module name: Themes and Methods in Medical History
  • Department: History
  • Credit: 30

Content and teaching | Assessment | Availability

Module content and teaching

Principal aims

This module is designed to introduce students to both major developments in medical thought and technology AND main methodological approaches and debates used within the field of History of Medicine. The course is team-taught, drawing on a range of expertise from Antiquity to the twenty-first century, and covering Britain, continental Europe, United States and Asia.

Principal learning outcomes

The module covers the period from Graeco-Roman Antiquity and early Islamic culture to the twenty-first century, and invites the students to think comparatively about medicine across space (and time!) through sessions on Asia as well as Britain, Europe and the US. It focuses on the evolution of ideas, language and technologies within medicine, the reception of these new approaches and lay responses to them, the structure of medical practice, and the scientific, social, and cultural context of medical intervention. Students are encouraged to situate medical practice in a broad historical and theoretical context, and to frame discussions in seminars through reading a series of seminal texts in the field. It also provides the opportunity to link this to sources available to the historian of medicine (e.g. medical texts, practice records, diaries, case records, public health reports and health propaganda, and visual sources: art, architecture, film and photography).

Timetabled teaching activities

The course is taught in weekly 2-hour seminars.

Departmental link

Other essential notes

This is the core module for the MA in the History of Medicine. The module, taught in the Autumn term, may also be taken by students on the MA in History, the MA in Modern History, or any taught Master's students outside the History Department.

Module assessment

Assessment group Assessment name Percentage
30 CATS (Module code: HI907-30)
A (Assessed work only) 6000 word essay 100%

Module availability

This module is available on the following courses:



Optional Core
  • Postgraduate Taught History of Medicine (V3P7) - Year 2