Category: Fellows

Checking in from the field: Donna Drucker

By , November 5, 2019

Guest Blogger Donna J. Drucker, MLS, PhD, Technische Universität Darmstadt, 2018–2019 New England Research Fellowship Consortium Fellow

Advertising Contraception in the 1970s and Beyond

Before the legalization of the hormonal pill, advertising of contraceptive methods to U.S. women in the 1930s and 1940s left much to the imagination. Even after the Supreme Court legalized the use of contraception as prescribed by physicians in November 1936, manufacturers mostly depicted the hands and arms of women preparing spermicides and diaphragms (http://www.technologystories.org/materializing-gender-through-contraceptive-technology-in-the-united-states-1930s-1940s/). At most, the instructional packaging would show a sketch of hands placing a diaphragm or spermicide applicator inside the woman’s body. Did the tone of advertising change after the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approved the pill for contraceptive use in June 1960? Looking at examples available in the Countway Library of Medicine’s collections shows that manufacturers continued to advertise only to a limited group of women for decades afterward.

One example is the image used on a September 1970 flyer for Parke, Davis’s hormonal pill, Norlestrin.

Norlestrin, 1970

 The instructional booklet contained no images of women’s bodies, only images of women’s heads and hands with wedding rings prominently displayed. The woman on the front cover looks thoughtfully at a dandelion in her hands. When the FDA first approved the pill, its approval extended only to married women, and the instructional packaging reflected the company’s consciousness of that fact. Doctors could legally prescribe the pill only to married women until March 1972, when the U.S. Supreme Court’s Eisenstadt v. Baird decision extended the right to privacy to unmarried people.

That conservative streak in advertising continued in commercial contraceptive product advertising long after Eisenstadt. The Boston Women’s Health Book Collective (BWHBC) Subject Files contain multiple examples of such contraceptive advertising from the late 1970s through the mid-2000s. One of those was in a November 1979 instructional flyer for a Koromex diaphragm.

Koromex diaphragm, 1979

The flyer advertised the spermicidal jellies, creams, and foams that the Holland-Rantos Company recommended women use with the diaphragm. Two of the spermicide packages showed a young, white, blond woman smiling, and two others showed daffodils. A second late-1970s example was for VCF spermicidal film, known in the United Kingdom as C-Film, also depicted the head and hand of a young, white, blond woman. She holds a package of the film with a serious expression, but the film itself is not visible.

VCF spermicide, late 1970s

While spermicides are still available in the U.S. and are marketed for use with barrier methods, they never caught on as methods to use alone.

The last example from the BWHBC Subject Files is an empty package for a product called the Bikini Condom, which appears to have been designed by an Emory University professor of obstetrics and gynecology called Robert A. Hatcher in 1990–1991. In a letter to the company International Prophylactics, Inc. (IPI), Hatcher claimed that “it empowers women,” and that “it has a good future as a contraceptive.”

Bikini Condom, 1990

The package has two images: one of a smiling white brunette woman looking off into the distance and another of the bikini condom itself. IPI briefly manufactured it, but it never seems to have caught on more widely.

By examining these examples of contraceptive advertising for women, it seems that manufacturers only envisioned white, middle-class, well-groomed women using their products. Of course, contraception was a concern of anyone desiring to prevent a pregnancy and engaging in behavior where sperm and egg could meet, but neither major nor minor manufacturers included broader representations of potential customers on their packaging.

Donna may be based in Germany, but check into what she is working on via Twitter @histofsex

Apply now for a 2020-2021 New England Regional Fellowship!

By , November 1, 2019

The New England Regional Fellowship Consortium (NERFC) is now accepting applications for 2020-2021 research grants.

This collaboration of thirty major cultural agencies will offer at least twenty awards in 2020–2021. Each grant provides a stipend of $5,000 for a minimum of eight weeks of research at three or more participating institutions beginning June 1, 2020, and ending May 31, 2021. The Francis A. Countway Library of Medicine and its Center for the History of Medicine is a NERFC member. Visit the NERFC website for more information and list of participating institutions.

Special award in 2020–2021: The Colonial Society of Massachusetts will underwrite a project on the history of New England before the American Revolution.

Application Process: All applications must be completed using the online form.

Deadline: February 1, 2020

Questions: Contact the Massachusetts Historical Society:
Phone at 617-646-0577 or Email fellowships@masshist.org

Apply Now for a 2020-2021 Boston Medical Library Fellowship!

By , November 1, 2019

Feldtbuch der Wundtartzney
(Gersdorff, Hans von, -1529. / Strassburg, Durch Joannem Schott, 1517) f RD151.G32 Boston Medical Library in the Francis A. Countway Library of Medicine

Since 2003, the Boston Medical Library (BML) in the Francis A. Countway Library of Medicine has sponsored annual fellowships supporting research in the history of medicine using Center for the History of Medicine collections. BML Fellowships in the History of Medicine at the Countway provide stipends of up to $5,000 to support travel, lodging, and incidental expenses for a flexible period between July 1, 2020 and June 30, 2021. Besides conducting research, the fellow will submit a report on the results of his/her residency and may be asked to present a seminar or lecture at the Countway Library.

The collections of the Center for the History of Medicine enable researchers to contextualize, understand, and contribute to the history of human health care, scientific medical development, and public health; they reflect nearly every medical and public health discipline, including anatomy, anesthesiology, cardiology, dentistry, internal medicine, medical jurisprudence, neurology, obstetrics and gynecology, pharmacy and pharmacology, psychiatry and psychology, and surgery, as well as variety of popular medicine topics and public health subjects such as industrial hygiene, nutrition, and tropical medicine. The Center serves as the institutional archives for the Harvard Medical School, Harvard School of Dental Medicine, and the Harvard School of Public Health, and is home to the Warren Anatomical Museum, which includes anatomical artifacts, pathological specimens, instruments, and other objects. Through the Center, researchers have the opportunity to use the rich historical resources of both the Harvard Medical Library and Boston Medical Library.

Fellowship proposals (no more than 5 pages) should describe the research project and demonstrate that the Countway Library has resources central to the research topic.
Applications should include:
• CV
• Length of visit
• Proposed budget and budget breakdown (travel, lodging, incidentals)
• Two letters of recommendation are also required

Electronic submissions of materials may be sent to: chm@hms.harvard.edu

Boston Medical Library Fellowships
Center for the History of Medicine
Francis A. Countway Library of Medicine
10 Shattuck Street
Boston, MA 02115.

Application deadline is Friday, February 14th.

Please see our website for more information and details about previous research recipients. Awards will be announced in early April.

Announcing the 2019-2020 Women in Medicine Legacy Foundation Fellow

By , July 2, 2019

The Archives for Women in Medicine and Women in Medicine Legacy Foundation are pleased to announce the 2019-2020 Foundation for the History of Women in Medicine Fellow: Heather Munro Prescott, Ph.D.

Heather Munro Prescott, Ph.D. 2019-2020 Women in Medicine Legacy Foundation Fellow

Heather Munro Prescott is Professor of History at Central Connecticut State University in New Britain. She specializes in the history of women in medicine and women’s health issues with an emphasis on the post-World War II era. Her first book, A Doctor of Their Own: The History of Adolescent Medicine, which drew on archival materials in the Countway Library and Boston Children’s Hospital, received the Will Solimene Award of Excellence in Medical Communication from the New England Chapter, American Medical Writers Association. Her most recent book is The Morning After: A History of Emergency Contraception, published by Rutgers University Press in 2011. She has also published articles on the history of medicine in the Bulletin of the History of Medicine, Journal of the History of Medicine and Allied Sciences, and Technology and Culture. She has also received numerous grants and awards, including the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists Fellowship in the History of American Obstetrics and Gynecology, a National Endowment for the Humanities Fellowship, and publication grants from the National Library of Medicine. Her Women in Medicine Legacy Foundation Fellowship will be used to conduct archival research for a book on the cultural history of Planned Parenthood Federation of America.


The Women in Medicine Legacy Foundation Fellowship is offered in partnership with the Women in Medicine Legacy Foundation (formerly the Foundation for the History of Women in Medicine). Information regarding the Fellowship program is available at http://www.wimlf.org/fellowships and https://www.countway.harvard.edu/chom/archives-women-medicine-fellowships.

The Women in Medicine Legacy Foundation was founded with the strong belief that understanding our history plays a powerful role in shaping our future. The resolute stand women took to establish their place in these fields propels our vision forward. We serve as stewards to the stories from the past, and take pride in sharing them with the women of today. Our mission is to preserve and promote the history of women in medicine and the medical sciences, and we look forward to connecting you to our collective legacy that will empower our future.

A program of the Center for the History of Medicine at the Francis A. Countway Library of Medicine, the Archives for Women in Medicine actively acquires, preserves, promotes, and provides access to the professional and personal records of outstanding women leaders in medicine and the medical sciences.

2019-2020 Women in Medicine Legacy Foundation Fellowship

By , February 21, 2019

The Women in Medicine Legacy Foundation Research Fellowship

Deadline May 15, 2019

Details

First class of women accepted to Harvard Medical School, 1945. (HMS, Classes and Reunions, 00100.057)

The Women in Medicine Legacy Foundation is pleased to provide one $5,000 grant to support travel, lodging, and incidental expenses for a flexible research period between July 1, 2019 and June 30, 2020. Foundation Fellowships are offered for research related to the history of women to be conducted at the Center for the History of Medicine at the Francis A. Countway Library of Medicine. Preference will be given to:

  • projects that engage specifically with the history of women physicians, other health workers, or medical scientists; proposals on the history of women’s health issues will also be considered
  • those who are using collections from the Center’s Archives for Women in Medicine; however, research on the topic of women in medicine using other material from the Countway Library will be considered
  • applicants who live beyond commuting distance of the Countway; however, all are encouraged to apply, including graduate students

In return, the Foundation requests a one page report on the Fellow’s research experience, a copy of the final product (with the ability to post excerpts from the paper/project), and a photo and bio of the Fellow for web and newsletter announcements. The Fellow will also be asked to present a lecture at the Countway Library.

Application Requirements

Applicants should submit a proposal (no more than five pages) outlining the subject and objectives of the research project, length of residence, historical materials to be used, and a project budget (including travel, lodging, and research expenses), along with a curriculum vitae and two letters of recommendations by May 15, 2019. The fellowship proposal should demonstrate that the Countway Library has resources central to the research topic.

Applications should be sent to: The Foundation for the History of Women in Medicine Fellowship, Archives for Women in Medicine, Francis A. Countway Library of Medicine, 10 Shattuck Street, Boston, MA 02115. Electronic submissions of applications and supporting materials and any questions may be directed to chm@hms.harvard.edu or (617) 432-2170.

Partnering Organizations

The Women in Medicine Legacy Foundation, formerly the Foundation for the History of Women in Medicine, was founded with the strong belief that understanding our history plays a powerful role in shaping our future. The resolute stand women took to establish their place in these fields propels our vision forward. We serve as stewards to the stories from the past, and take pride in sharing them with the women of today. Our mission is to preserve and promote the history of women in medicine and the medical sciences, and we look forward to connecting you to our collective legacy that will empower our future.

The Archives for Women in Medicine is a program of the Countway Library’s Center for the History of Medicine at Harvard Medical School. The Archives for Women in Medicine actively acquires, processes, preserves, provides access to, and publicizes the papers of women physicians, researchers, and medical administrators. Learn more about collections open to research on our Archives for Women in Medicine Collections page.

Established in 1960 as a result of an alliance between the Boston Medical Library and the Harvard Medical Library, the Francis A. Countway Library of Medicine is the largest academic medical library in the United States. The Countway Library maintains a collection of approximately 700,000 volumes. The Center for the History of Medicine’s collection of archives and manuscripts, numbering between 15-20 million items, is the largest collection of its kind in the United States. The manuscripts collection includes the personal and professional records of physicians from the medieval and Renaissance periods through the twentieth century, including the professional papers of many renowned Harvard faculty members as well as physicians and scientists from New England and around the country.

The 2018-2019 Foundation for the History of Women in Medicine Research Fellow is Carla Bittel. Previous fellows include Maria Daxenbichler, Jordan Katz, Kate GrauvogelLouella McCarthyRebecca KluchinCiara BreathnachCarrie Adkins, and Hilary Aquino.

Apply Now for a 2019-2020 Boston Medical Library Fellowship!

By , February 19, 2019

Since 2003, the Boston Medical Library (BML) in the Francis A. Countway Library of Medicine has sponsored annual fellowships supporting research in the history of medicine using Center for the History of Medicine collections. BML Fellowships in the History of Medicine at the Countway provide stipends of up to $5,000 to support travel, lodging, and incidental expenses for a flexible period between July 1, 2019 and June 30, 2020. Besides conducting research, the fellow will submit a report on the results of his/her residency and may be asked to present a seminar or lecture at the Countway Library.

Engraving of an apothecary in Das Buch der Cirurgia (Strassburg, 4 July 1497). Boston Medical Library Rare Books Collection (Ballard 233).

The collections of the Center for the History of Medicine enable researchers to contextualize, understand, and contribute to the history of human health care, scientific medical development, and public health; they eflect nearly every medical and public health discipline, including anatomy, anesthesiology, cardiology, dentistry, internal medicine, medical jurisprudence, neurology, obstetrics and gynecology, pharmacy and pharmacology, psychiatry and psychology, and surgery, as well as variety of popular medicine topics and public health subjects such as industrial hygiene, nutrition, and tropical medicine. The Center serves as the institutional archives for the Harvard Medical School, Harvard School of Dental Medicine, and the Harvard School of Public Health, and is home to the Warren Anatomical Museum, which includes anatomical artifacts, pathological specimens, instruments, and other objects. Through the Center, researchers have the opportunity to use the rich historical resources of both the Harvard Medical Library and Boston Medical Library. For more information, visit https://www.countway.harvard.edu/center-history-medicine/collections.

Fellowship proposals (no more than 5 pages) should describe the research project and demonstrate that the Countway Library has resources central to the research topic.

Applications should include:

  • CV
  • Length of visit
  • Proposed budget and budget breakdown (travel, lodging, incidentals)
  • Two letters of recommendation are also required

Application deadline is Friday, March 29th.

Electronic submissions of materials may be sent to: chm@hms.harvard.edu

Boston Medical Library Fellowships
Center for the History of Medicine
Francis A. Countway Library of Medicine
10 Shattuck Street
Boston, MA 02115.

Please see our website for more information and details about previous research recipients. Awards will be announced in early May.

2018-2019 Boston Medical Library Fellowships in the History of Medicine at the Countway Library

By , October 26, 2017
Herbolarium de virtutibus herbarum (Vincenza: Leonardus Achates, de Basilea, and Guilelmus de Papia, 27 October 1491). Ballard 368. Boston Medical Library in the Francis A. Countway Library of Medicine.

Herbolarium de virtutibus herbarum (Vincenza: Leonardus Achates, de Basilea, and Guilelmus de Papia, 27 October 1491). Ballard 368. Boston Medical Library in the Francis A. Countway Library of Medicine.

The Francis A. Countway Library of Medicine is pleased to offer annual fellowships to support research in the history of medicine. Established in 1960 as a result of an alliance between the Boston Medical Library and the Harvard Medical Library, the Francis A. Countway Library of Medicine is the largest academic medical library in the United States. The Countway Library maintains a collection of approximately 700,000 volumes. Its Center for the History of Medicine holds 250,000 books and journals published before 1920, including 802 incunabula. The department’s printed holdings include one of the most complete medical periodical collections, an extensive collection of European medical texts issued between the 15th and 20th centuries, and excellent holdings of pre-1800 English and pre-1900 American imprints. The book collection is strong in virtually every medical discipline and is particularly rich in popular medicine, medical education, public health, Judaica, and travel accounts written by physicians. The Countway’s collection of archives and manuscripts, approximately 20 million items, is the largest of its kind in the United States. The manuscript collection includes the personal and professional papers of many prominent American physicians, especially those who practiced and conducted research in the New England region, or who were associated with Harvard Medical School. The Countway Library also serves as the institutional archives for the Harvard Medical School, Harvard School of Dental Medicine, and the Harvard School of Public Health. The printed, manuscript, and archives holdings are complemented by an extensive print and photograph collection and the collections of the Warren Anatomical Museum. Established in 1847, the museum houses an exceptional collection of medical artifacts, pathological specimens, anatomical models, and instruments.

The Boston Medical Library Fellowships in the History of Medicine at the Countway provide stipends of up to $5,000 to support travel, lodging, and incidental expenses for a flexible period between July 1, 2018 and June 30, 2019. Besides conducting research, the fellow will submit a report on the results of his/her residency and may be asked to present a seminar or lecture at the Countway Library. The fellowship proposal should demonstrate that the Countway Library has resources central to the research topic. Preference will be given to applicants who live beyond commuting distance of the Countway. The application, outlining the proposed project (proposal should not exceed five pages), length of residence, materials to be consulted, and a budget with specific information on travel, lodging, and research expenses, should be submitted, along with a curriculum vitae and two letters of recommendation, by February 15, 2018.

Applications should be sent to:

Boston Medical Library Fellowships
Center for the History of Medicine
Francis A. Countway Library of Medicine
10 Shattuck Street
Boston, MA 02115.

Electronic submissions of applications and supporting materials may be sent to: chm@hms.harvard.edu.

Awards will be announced in April 2018.

The Boston Medical Library’s Abel Lawrence Peirson Fund provides support for the fellowship program.

The Boston Medical Library is a physicians’ non-profit organization, incorporated in 1877. Its mission is “to be a Library for the dissemination of medical knowledge, the promotion of medical education and scholarship, and the preservation and celebration of medical history, and thereby to advance the quality of health and healthcare of the people.” Today there are over 300 fellows of the Boston Medical Library. In 1960, the Boston Medical Library entered into an agreement with the Harvard Medical School Library to combine staff, services, and collections into one modern biomedical facility. The Francis A. Countway Library of Medicine opened in 1965 and ranks as one of the largest biomedical libraries in the world.

Announcing the 2017-2018 Women in Medicine Legacy Foundation Fellows

By , September 11, 2017
Maria Dazenbichler

Maria Daxenbichler

Maria Daxenbichler is a PhD candidate in the Department of History at the University at Buffalo. She holds a Magistra Artium degree in American Studies from Leipzig University, Germany, and a M.A. in American Studies from the Transnational Studies department at the University at Buffalo. Her dissertation investigates how medical researchers in the U.S. changed the field of gynecology between the 1880s and 1920s. Through developing new and allegedly safe abortion techniques, they strengthened their authority over women’s health, reproduction, and medical treatments. They then shared their new knowledge with medical and nursing students in teaching hospitals, thus helping to further professionalize the medical field and establish the authority of formally trained practitioners. She also received a research fellowship from the University of Illinois at Chicago for this project.

Ms. Daxenbichler plans to utilize the Records of New England Hospital for Women and Children, Records of Boston Lying-In Hospital, Peter Bent Brigham Hospital Records, George Richard Minot Papers, Edward Peirson Richardson Papers, and the Papers of James Read Chadwick.

 

Jordan Katz

Jordan Katz

Jordan Katz is an advanced doctoral student in the Department of History at Columbia University. She specializes in early modern Jewish history, with interests in Jewish cultural history, history of science, and Jewish communal autonomy. Her dissertation examines the role of Jewish midwives and medical women within communal and intellectual frameworks in the early modern Ashkenazic world. She is also interested in culinary history and historical reconstruction.

Ms. Katz has received fellowships from the Center for Jewish History and the Leo Baeck Fellowship Programme – Studienstiftung des deutschen Volkes. Her work has been published in Jewish Quarterly Review.

At the Center, Ms. Katz will consult several 16th and 17th century midwifery treatises including Samuel Janson’s 1680 Korte en Bondige verhandeling, van de voort-teeling en t’ kinderbaren met den aenklave van dien.

We look forward to hosting both fellows at the Center this year!

 


The Women in Medicine Legacy Foundation Fellowship is offered in partnership with the Women in Medicine Legacy Foundation (formerly the Foundation for the History of Women in Medicine). Information regarding the Fellowship program is available at http://www.wimlf.org/fellowships and https://www.countway.harvard.edu/chom/archives-women-medicine-fellowships.

A program of the Center for the History of Medicine at the Francis A. Countway Library of Medicine, the Archives for Women in Medicine actively acquires, preserves, promotes, and provides access to the professional and personal records of outstanding women leaders in medicine and the medical sciences.

 

The Women in Medicine Legacy Foundation, formerly the Foundation for the History of Women in Medicine, was founded with the strong belief that understanding our history plays a powerful role in shaping our future. The resolute stand women took to establish their place in these fields propels our vision forward. We serve as stewards to the stories from the past, and take pride in sharing them with the women of today. Our mission is to preserve and promote the history of women in medicine and the medical sciences, and we look forward to connecting you to our collective legacy that will empower our future.

2017-2018 Foundation for the History of Women in Medicine Fellowship: Applications Open

By , February 15, 2017

The Foundation for the History of Women in Medicine Research Fellowship

Deadline May 15, 2017

Details

The Foundation for the History of Women in Medicine is pleased to provide one $5,000 grant to support travel, lodging, and incidental expenses for a flexible research period between July 1, 2017 and June 30, 2018. Foundation Fellowships are offered for research related to the history of women to be conducted at the Center for the History of Medicine at the Francis A. Countway Library of Medicine. Preference will be given to:

  • projects that engage specifically with the history of women physicians, other health workers or medical scientists; however, proposals on the history of women’s health issues will also be considered
  • those who are using collections from the Center’s Archives for Women in Medicine, but research on the topic of women in medicine using other material from the Countway Library will be considered
  • applicants who live beyond commuting distance of the Countway; however, all are encouraged to apply, including graduate students

In return, the Foundation requests a one page report on the Fellow’s research experience; a copy of the final product (with the ability to post excerpts from the paper/project); and a photo and bio of the Fellow for web and newsletter announcements. The Fellow will also be asked to present a lecture at the Countway Library.

Application Requirements

Applicants should submit a proposal (no more than five pages) outlining the subject and objectives of the research project, length of residence, historical materials to be used, and a project budget (including travel, lodging, and research expenses), along with a curriculum vitae and two letters of recommendations by May 15, 2017. The fellowship proposal should demonstrate that the Countway Library has resources central to the research topic.

Applications should be sent to: The Foundation for the History of Women in Medicine Fellowship, Archives for Women in Medicine, Francis A. Countway Library of Medicine, 10 Shattuck Street, Boston, MA 02115. Electronic submissions of applications and supporting materials and any questions may be directed to chm@hms.harvard.edu or (617) 432-2170.

 

Partnering Organizations

The Foundation for the History of Women in Medicine, soon to be the Women in Medicine Legacy Foundation, was founded with the strong belief that understanding our history plays a powerful role in shaping our future. The resolute stand women took to establish their place in these fields propels our vision forward. We serve as stewards to the stories from the past, and take pride in sharing them with the women of today. Our mission is to preserve and promote the history of women in medicine and the medical sciences, and we look forward to connecting you to our collective legacy that will empower our future.

The Archives for Women in Medicine is a program of the Countway Library’s Center for the History of Medicine at Harvard Medical School. The Archives for Women in Medicine actively acquires, processes, preserves, provides access to, and publicizes the papers of women physicians, researchers, and medical administrators. Learn more about collections open to research on our Archives for Women in Medicine Collections page.

Established in 1960 as a result of an alliance between the Boston Medical Library and the Harvard Medical Library, the Francis A. Countway Library of Medicine is the largest academic medical library in the United States. The Countway Library maintains a collection of approximately 700,000 volumes. The Center for the History of Medicine’s collection of archives and manuscripts, numbering between 15-20 million items, is the largest collection of its kind in the United States. The manuscripts collection includes the personal and professional records of physicians from the medieval and Renaissance periods through the twentieth century, including the professional papers of many renowned Harvard faculty members as well as physicians and scientists from New England and around the country.

The 2016-2017 Foundation for the History of Women in Medicine Research Fellow is Kate Grauvogel, due to conduct research at Countway in June 2017. Previous fellows include Louella McCarthy, Rebecca Kluchin, Ciara Breathnach, Carrie Adkins, and Hilary Aquino.

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