History | HEALTH, SICKNESS AND MEDICINE IN AMERICA
A300 | 0394 | Pohl


11:45A-1:00P     D     BH244

Above section open to undergraduates only

As medical and pharmaceutical costs continue to skyrocket, as debates
rage in Congress over Medicare and patient rights, and as alternative
remedies and health-oriented books are more popular than ever, we are
left to try to understand the origins of Americans' obsession with
health and the means they pursue to obtain it.  This course, beginning
with colonial America but focusing on the nineteenth and early
twentieth centuries, explores changing understandings of sickness and
medicine in the United States and the tremendous growth and
development of our health care system.  Such topics as doctor-patient
relations, home remedies, and x-ray technology will address what
medical change and beliefs tell us about American values and society.

This course will be divided into two sections: the first covering the
colonial period through the Civil War and Reconstruction era; the
second covering the 1880s through the 1930s with the last week spent
discussing problems and issues in medicine since World War II.  The
required readings are absolutely central to the course and include a
textbook, a collection of essays and documents on the history of
medicine, and a historical study of the experience of tuberculosis.

All students are required to attend class regularly, complete the
readings and assignments, and thoughtfully analyze and discuss class
materials.  There will be a midterm exam and a final exam (each 25% of
the final grade).  Students will also be responsible for weekly 2-page
papers on topics related to class readings, documents, films, and the
Internet (40% total).  Attendance and participation will count for
10%.