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A risky remedy?
Sophie Vasset

’. 7 William Buchan sums up this ambivalence in his 1786 essay on mineral waters, the appendix to his celebrated Domestic Medicine : ‘When people hear of a wonderful cure having been performed by some mineral water, they immediately conclude that it will cure everything, and accordingly swallow it down, when they might as well take poison’, 8 he writes. Buchan is adamant: ‘Without a proper discrimination with regard to the disease and the constitution of

in Murky waters
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Sophie Vasset

-centred image of spas revolving around leisure and tourism. And yet, in each of these narratives – even when Bath is the setting – illness ranks as a primary motive among the many reasons that bring each protagonist to visit a spa town. Sickness can affect a secondary character, a plot device often interpreted as a pretext for a spa visit: Mr Allen's ‘gouty constitution’  5 in Jane Austen's North­anger Abbey is a reason to go to Bath which leads the heroine, Catherine Morland, to meet with Isabella and John Thorpe and the

in Murky waters
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Promiscuity, gender and sexuality
Sophie Vasset

medicine and seduction taken from Colman's comedy Spleen, or, Islington Spa , published four years later, exemplifies the sexualisation of doctor–patient relationships. Old D’Oyley's wife-to-be is said to have been seduced by D’Oyley's new doctor: A spin : The Doctor's the matter. He has been feeling the pulse of your wife that was to be, examining too closely her constitution, Mr. D

in Murky waters
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Doltomania
Richard Bates

and civil partnerships. Robcis’s key argument is that the ‘structuralist social contract’ – the wide acceptance of a ‘causal relation between kinship and socialisation [which] posited sexual difference as the necessary condition for all social and psychic organisation’ (and thus privileged the maintenance of the heteronormative family as crucial to the constitution of both the self and the state) – was not only used in political and judicial spheres to resist reforms to family policy, but became seen as synonymous with

in Psychoanalysis and the family in twentieth-century France
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Popularising psychoanalysis, 1945–68
Richard Bates

these more technical ideas, Dolto applied the word to the commonplace feeling of being blocked or trapped, effectively inviting her audience to incorporate the psychoanalytic term into their everyday language. She also promoted childhood determinism, the idea that children’s psychological problems could be ‘heavily consequential’ for their future psychological constitution and that psychological education on the part of parents could help prevent this. 20 She suggested that many apparently minor aspects of a child

in Psychoanalysis and the family in twentieth-century France
Sophie Vasset

colonies as a sort of medical and social quarantine which re-enacted modes of nostalgic continental sociability, is a good starting point to analyse the use of mineral waters in British colonies: If altitude and water cures came to be seen as essential to detoxify, recalibrate, or otherwise heal the constitutions, organs, even the blood composition of French people who had spent time in ‘hot climes,’ then said climes must indeed have been considered highly noxious. Nowhere is the anxiety over colonial

in Murky waters
Constructing population in the search for disease genes
Steve Sturdy

much as possible of the sheer diversity of human genetic constitutions: the Human Genome Diversity Project and National Geographic's Genographic Project are cases in point. Other initiatives – often framed in terms of documenting genetic ‘variation’ rather than ‘diversity’ – claim a more practical orientation towards identifying gene variants of medical significance: the International Haplotype Mapping (HapMap) Project and the African Genome Variation Project exemplify this latter approach to human genetics. In explaining the medical value of such work, advocates

in Global health and the new world order
Suriname under Dutch rule, 1750– 1950

Explaining how leprosy was considered in various historical settings by referring to categories of uncleanliness in antiquity, is problematic. The book historicizes how leprosy has been framed and addressed. It investigates the history of leprosy in Suriname, a plantation society where the vast majority of the population consisted of imported slaves from Africa. The relationship between the modern stigmatization and exclusion of people affected with leprosy, and the political tensions and racial fears originating in colonial slave society, exerting their influence until after the decolonization up to the present day. The book explores leprosy management on the black side of the medical market in the age of slavery as contrasted with the white side. The difference in perspectives on leprosy between African slaves and European masters contributed to the development of the 'Great Confinement' policies, and leprosy sufferers were sent to the Batavia leprosy asylum. Dutch debates about leprosy took place when the threat of a 'return' of leprosy to the Netherlands appeared to materialise. A symbiotic alliance for leprosy care that had formed between the colonial state and the Catholics earlier in the nineteenth century was renegotiated within the transforming landscape of Surinamese society to incorporate Protestants as well. By 1935, Dutch colonial medicine had dammed the growing danger of leprosy by using the modern policies of detection and treatment. Dutch doctors and public health officials tried to come to grips with the Afro-Surinamese belief in treef and its influence on the execution of public health policies.

Space, identity and power

This volume aims to disclose the political, social and cultural factors that influenced the sanitary measures against epidemics developed in the Mediterranean during the long nineteenth century. The contributions to the book provide new interdisciplinary insights to the booming field of ‘quarantine studies’ through a systematic use of the analytic categories of space, identity and power. The ultimate goal is to show the multidimensional nature of quarantine, the intimate links that sanitary administrations and institutions had with the territorial organization of states, international trade, the construction of national, colonial, religious and professional identities or the configuration of political regimes. The circum-Mediterranean geographical spread of the case studies contained in this volume illuminates the similarities and differences around and across this sea, on the southern and northern shores, in Arabic, Spanish, Portuguese, Greek, Italian, English and French-speaking domains. At the same time, it is highly interested in engaging in the global English-speaking community, offering a wide range of terms, sources, bibliography, interpretative tools and views produced and elaborated in various Mediterranean countries. The historical approach will be useful to recognize the secular tensions that still lie behind present-day issues such as the return of epidemics or the global flows of migrants and refugees.

Bodies and environments in Italy and England

This book explores whether early modern people cared about their health, and what did it mean to lead a healthy life in Italy and England. According to the Galenic-Hippocratic tradition, 'preservative' medicine was one of the three central pillars of the physician's art. Through a range of textual evidence, images and material artefacts, the book documents the profound impact which ideas about healthy living had on daily practices as well as on intellectual life and the material world in Italy and England. Staying healthy and health conservation was understood as depending on the careful management of the six 'Non-Naturals': the air one breathed, food and drink, excretions, sleep, exercise and repose, and the 'passions of the soul'. The book provides fresh evidence about the centrality of the Non-Naturals in relation to groups whose health has not yet been investigated in works about prevention: babies, women and convalescents. Pregnancy constituted a frequent physical state for many women of the early modern European aristocracy. The emphasis on motion and rest, cleansing the body, and improving the mental and spiritual states made a difference for the aristocratic woman's success in the trade of frequent pregnancy and childbirth. Preventive advice was not undifferentiated, nor simply articulated by individual complexion. Examining the roles of the Non-Naturals, the book provides a more holistic view of convalescent care. It also deals with the paradoxical nature of perceptions about the Neapolitan environment and the way in which its airs were seen to affect human bodies and health.