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Perspectives on audiences and impact

Historians interact with a variety of audiences. In the history of medicine – our focus – audiences include government committees and commissions dealing with ethical issues in biomedicine; journalists asking for historical perspectives on new discoveries as well as abuses and controversies in medicine; curators and visitors at museums; sometimes even medical researchers utilizing historical material. A particularly prominent audience for historians of medicine is in health care, students as well as practitioners. An important aim of the book is to challenge the idea that communication between researchers and their audiences is unidirectional. This is achieved by employing a media theoretical perspective to discuss how historians create audiences for academic knowledge production (‘audiencing’). The theme is opportune not least because the measurement of ‘impact’ is rapidly becoming a policy tool. The book’s 10 chapters explore the history of medicine’s relationships with its audiences, from the early twentieth century to the present. Throughout the authors discuss how historians of medicine and others have interacted with and impacted audiences. Topics include medical education, policy-making, exhibitions and museums, film and television.

Ludmilla Jordanova

medicine with its diverse interest groups, stakeholders, consumers and publics. How does ‘audience’ help us to probe the experiences of reading, viewing art or walking through a building – all activities that are relevant to the history of medicine and amenable to forms of analysis that give due weight to reception, that is, to participants’ reactions? Perhaps it is best to treat ‘audience’ as a holding term that helps scholars to open up diverse

in Communicating the history of medicine
Author: Vanessa Heggie

Athletes start the century as normal, healthy citizens, and end up as potentially unhealthy physiological 'freaks', while the general public are increasingly urged to do more exercise and play more sports. This book offers a comprehensive study, and social history, of the development of sports medicine in Britain, as practiced by British doctors and on British athletes in national and international settings. It describes how and why, in Britain, medicine applied to sport became first an area of expertise known as sports medicine, and then a formal medical specialty: Sport and Exercise Medicine. In the late nineteenth century, vigorous exercise was an acceptable, probably necessary, part of the moderate healthy lifestyle for the normal, healthy man. Consequently sports medicine was part and parcel of normal medical treatment, distinguishable only through its location or through its patient history. There was no wide-spread de facto scepticism about the value of vigorous exercise among physicians and scientists. The normality of the young male athlete is reconsidered between 1928 and 1952. At the end of the period, the athlete becomes an abnormal or supernormal human being who demands specialist medical interventions. The formation and work of British Association of Sport and (Exercise) Medicine, the Institute of Sports Medicine, the Sports Council, and the British Olympic Association's Medical Committee is discussed. The book finally discusses fitness. Normal life, war, elite competition gives us an insight into how athletic bodies are conceptualised, and how sports medicine has formed and reformed over a century.

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Audiences and stakeholders in the history of medicine
Solveig Jülich and Sven Widmalm

film is one example where their research may be said to have a societal ‘impact’, though often blunted for dramaturgical reasons, and sometimes made invisible because historical knowledge is seen as a commons (a resource generally available free of charge) where the crediting of authorship does not always seem necessary. In the history of medicine – our focus in this book – other audiences include government committees and commissions dealing

in Communicating the history of medicine
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Practice, institutionalization and disciplinary context of history of medicine in Germany
Ylva Söderfeldt and Matthis Krischel

location of history of medicine in the academic landscape varies between countries and, as we shall argue, this also has very tangible effects on the research profiles developed. In Germany, the strong institutionalization of history of medicine as part of medical school curricula directs researchers towards particular audiences, and sometimes defines impact in a manner that risks sacrificing the quality of research. However, this is not due to having

in Communicating the history of medicine
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Architecture, asylum and community in twentieth-century mental health care
Sarah Chaney and Jennifer Walke

month-long series of activities at the Dragon Café, a service user creative space in Southwark. In this chapter we explore the value and relevance of a combined academic and public engagement approach – to the Museum of the Mind and its users as well as to the history of medicine more generally. First, we consider the value of public engagement in the history of psychiatry, through discussion of the longer tradition and benefits of service user

in Communicating the history of medicine
The historian’s dilemmas in a time of health-care reform
Beatrix Hoffman

-specialists in understanding the story. The book is now being used in undergraduate courses in the history of medicine or health-care policy at several colleges and universities. Unlike a TV broadcast, which in my case led to a brief but significant rise in sales, classroom adoption may allow a book to continue selling modestly but steadily over a longer period of time – and hopefully to have an influence on students’ knowledge of, and thinking about

in Communicating the history of medicine
Vanessa Heggie

stereotype of the American pseudo-amateur, often a college athlete with a significant scholarship able to devote considerable time to athletic training, is an early feature of negative British accounts of foreign sportsmen (and later women). It was relatively easy to dismiss American success as the result of an ungentlemanly desire to win, and an inappropriate obsession with regimented training – including advice from medical and scientific professionals. The early history of sports medicine in the USA, as written by sports medicine professionals, usually concentrates

in A history of British sports medicine
Vanessa Heggie

of the early twentieth century that some in the world of sport were seeking a scientific ‘edge’. Enhancement brings us to a particular complaint in the history of medicine, which is the invisibility to the historian of many healing practices. Much sports medicine is self-treatment, and often goes unremarked or unrecorded. We may occasionally stumble upon reports of a cyclist’s decision to suck barley sugar on a long ride, or a Saturday footballer’s use of a home-made poultice for a sprain, but these are exceptions. Likewise, in the area of treatment, practice is

in A history of British sports medicine
Teaching medical history to medical students
Frank Huisman

education was supposed to have the civic virtue needed to transcend self-interest and serve the public interest in a rational, humanitarian way. Over the course of time, the criteria for suffrage were extended. As a result, the discourse on audience – understood as judgement of fitness for citizenship – changed considerably. Until now, ‘audience’ has been a rather underdeveloped category in the history of medicine. 4

in Communicating the history of medicine