Early operating theater

Courses for Spring 2010

Medical History and Bioethics 431:
Childbirth in the US

Instructor: Judith Leavitt

American women's childbirth experiences from the colonial period to the present. Childbirth as a cultural as well as a biological event. Basic physiological information for understanding and evaluating changing approaches to pregnancy and childbirth.

Crosslisted with History of Science and with Gender and Women's Studies

3 cr.; S (Social Science), D (Intermediate or Advanced)

1:00-2:15 TR

Prerequisites: Women St 103 or 430 or equiv; or cons inst


Medical History and Bioethics 523:
Race, American Medicine and Public Health

Instructor: Susan Lederer

The problem of the 20th century, wrote W.E.B. DuBois in The Souls of Black Folk (1903), “is the problem of the color-line.” This course considers the issue of the color line in American medicine over the past two centuries. We will be looking at the ways in which skin color (and other elements of “racial identity”) have influenced the experiences of patients, physicians and nurses, and medical researchers, seeking to document and analyze how conceptions of race have shaped the health concerns and health outcomes of Americans in the past two hundred years. Topics include the origins of racial classification, the health and medical care of slaves, the use of minorities as research subjects, especially the Tuskegee Syphilis Study, the history of racial disparities in medicine, and the efforts to integrate the American medical profession.

Crosslisted with History of Science and with Afro-American Studies

3 cr.; S (Social Science), D (Intermediate or Advanced)

2:30-3:45 MW

Prerequisites: Junior or Senior standing


Medical History and Bioethics 532:
The History of the (American) Body

Instructor: Judith A. Houck

This course demonstrates that human bodies have social and cultural histories. It will highlight the social values placed on different bodies, the changing social expectations bodies create, and the role of science and medicine in creating the cultural meanings of bodies.

Crosslisted with History of Science and with Gender and Women's Studies

3 cr.; H (Humanities), A (Advanced)

11:00-12:15 TR

Prerequisites: GWS 103 or other GWS course; prev hist (incl med hist & hist sci) crse preferred


Medical History and Bioethics 553:
International Health & Global Society

Instructor: Richard Keller

Major problems in international health from 1750 to the present. Focus on disease epidemiology and ecology; political economy of health; migration; quarantine; race, ethnicity, and health care; international health research; cross-cultural healing; mental and maternal health; growth of international health organizations.

Crosslisted with History of Science and with Population Health

3 cr.; Z (Humanities or Social Sci), I (Intermediate)

2:30-3:45 TR

Prerequisites: Jr or Sr st, or cons inst. Graduate students must register concurrently in MHB 753


Medical History and Bioethics 558:
Ethical Problems Raised by Biomedical Technology

Instructors: N. Fost and R. Streiffer

Ethical issues created by new biomedical technologies, such as genetic screening, prenatal diagnosis, prolongation of life, treatment of severe birth defects, /I/in vitro /M/fertilization, behavior modification, psychosurgery, and transplantation.

Crosslisted with Philosophy

3 cr.; H (Humanities), I (Intermediate)

Lecture T 11:00-12:15; Discussions R 9:30-10:45, 11:00-12:15, or 2:30-3:45

Prerequisites: Junior standing; Includes graduate and professional careers


Medical History and Bioethics 559-001:
Genetics & Society: Historical, Ethical, and Policy Dimensions

Instructor: Diane Paul

This course explores historical and contemporary intersections of genetics and society. We begin with a pair of philosophical concepts -- natural order and human dignity -- that are widely invoked in contemporary debates over genetic manipulation of humans and other organisms. We ask why it is so often thought crucial that our beliefs and practices accord with “nature” (including “human nature”) and also why some philosophers have rejected this perspective. We then examine both pre-World War II efforts to improve the human genome and contemporary practices of genetic testing, including prenatal and preimplantation genetic diagnosis, carrier testing, predictive testing for late-onset conditions, newborn screening, and the use of genetic tests to determine ancestry. We end by exploring the development of new forms of association and advocacy based on shared genetic risk.

Not cross-listed

3 cr.; H (Humanities), D (Intermediate or Advanced)

9:30-10:45 TR

Prerequisites: Cons inst; enrollment may be limited depending on topic and approach


Medical History and Bioethics 559-002:
Public Health Ethics

Instructor: Paul Kelleher

This course focuses on ethical issues distinctive of a population-level approach to disease prevention and health promotion, especially as they bear on the activities of governmental health agencies. Students will explore prominent theoretical approaches to public health ethics and will engage with several ethical tensions, including: the trade-offs between maximizing aggregate health benefits and addressing the special needs of vulnerable social sub-groups and individuals; the use of coercive or intrusive public health interventions that restrict individual freedom, infringe upon individual privacy, and/or invite individual harm (or risks of harm); the justification of paternalistic measures in societies or sub-populations that seemingly indulge in pleasurable yet unhealthy behaviors; the extent to which societies should hold individuals responsible for their health conditions; the need to decide who receives life-saving treatment or vaccination when not all can; the need to choose between the identifiable victims we can save with expensive measures here and now and the more numerous unidentifiable victims we could save in the future with the same monetary investment; and the need to establish reasonable limits to public health demands in a world where health outcomes are profoundly influenced by policies in other domains (such as transportation, housing, unemployment, and education) that generate their own ethical problems and imperatives.

Meets with Phil 305-001

3 cr.; H (Humanities), D (Intermediate or Advanced)

9:30-10:45 TR

Prerequisites: Cons inst; enrollment may be limited depending on topic and approach


Medical History and Bioethics 559-003:
Health, Disability & Social Justice

Instructor: Paul Kelleher

This course will focus on the question: What do we owe each other healthwise? Ever since John Rawls ducked this question in his influential work, A Theory of Justice, many others have offered philosophical frameworks that address it head on. With a primary focus on the domestic context, we will investigate the bases on which various frameworks found political duties to address health needs. Special attention will be paid both to the ways in which the demandingness of candidate duties shapes the content and scope of bona fide social obligations, and to the special features of the domestic political context that might generate health-related responsibilities of citizenship. We will also ask how a just society will respond to the presence of disability in the populace; this will force us to address the fact that many forms of disability appear to be the result of an interplay between biomedical impairment and the wider built and social environment. When disabilities can be eliminated or alleviated through social accommodation and environmental change, how should the burdens of accommodation be distributed? Are there some disabilities that ought always to be addressed via social accommodation, even if more individualized measures (surgery or special wheelchairs, e.g.) are less expensive or less socially disruptive? Finally, we will take up the question of justice for persons with cognitive disabilities, which is still largely neglected by philosophers concerned with justice in health and health care.

Meets with Phil 305-002

3 cr.; H (Humanities), D (Intermediate or Advanced)

4:00-5:15 TR

Prerequisites: Cons inst; enrollment may be limited depending on topic and approach


Medical History and Bioethics 565:
The Ethics of Modern Biotechnology

Instructor: Robert Streiffer

Study of ethical issues arising from the application of modern biotechnology to microorganisms, crops, and non-human animals. Readings cover moral theory, technology studies, political philosophy, the science used in biotechnology, and current regulations governing its use.

Crosslisted with Agronomy, Rural Sociology, and Philosophy

3 cr.; H (Humanities), I (Intermediate)

Time 2:25-4:55 M

Prerequisites: Junior standing


Medical History and Bioethics 668-001:
A History of Western Disability

Instructor: Walton Schalick

Disability is a word which surrounds us. From debates about end-of-life issues to Social Security from test-taking ‘allowances’ to Not-Dead-Yet, from Medicaid cutbacks to Terry Schiavo, disability is in the media, on our lips and in our ears. What is disability? How has disability changed over time and in different cultures? Where does such an idea come from? What social, cultural, and political assumptions is it based upon? Examining a wide range of historical arguments about the nature and purpose of disability, from pre-history to Plato, to medieval theologians, to more contemporary works, we will approach the history of disability in Western thought and social practice in terms of its relation to arguments about the role of human development and the formulation of personhood, citizenship, and social well being. The readings will include a thick mixture of primary sources in translation and secondary sources, both classic and newly published. We will encounter a variety of techniques and tools used by historians and other scholars as we course through the sessions. The emphasis of our discussions will be the characteristics of disability in a variety of centuries and cultures as well as lacunae in our understanding and debates in the literature.

Crosslisted with History of Science

3 cr.; A (Advanced)

MW 2:30pm - 3:45pm

Prerequisites: Junior standing


Medical History and Bioethics 668-002:
Medical Technologies in Historical Perspective

Instructor: Dayle DeLancey

From imaging devices to pharmaceuticals, medical technologies are often among the most novel and controversial aspects of contemporary society. Yet, U.S. history reveals that neither the emergence of high-profile medical technologies nor the dilemmas that often accompany their arrival are strictly ‘modern-day’ phenomena. History also demonstrates that such technologies tend to reflect not only the medical science, but also the social concerns, of the periods in which they have emerged. In this course, we will explore the ways in which a range of technologies – e.g. stethoscopes, spirometers, sphygmomanometers, hospital design, x-rays, reproductive technologies, gene therapy, virtual medicine, etc. – have at once shaped medicine and invited critique. Using readings from a range of sources illuminating key medical technologies in the 18th- to 21st-century U.S., we will analyze these technologies in historical, social, and theoretical context. Questions guiding our work will include: What are the historical roots of significant medical technologies? How did these technologies shape medicine? Why have physicians and the pubic embraced some medical technologies and not others? What non-medical technologies have influenced the development of medical technologies? How has the historiography of medical technology shaped the histories of medicine and science as academic disciplines? Has medical technology ever been "value free"?

Crosslisted with History of Science

3 cr.; A (Advanced)

1:00-2:15 TR

Prerequisites: Junior standing


Medical History and Bioethics 669:
Independent Study in Medical History

Instructor: Staff

To be arranged with instructor.

Not cross-listed

1-3 cr.; C (counts for L&S), A (Advanced)

Time to be arranged

Prerequisites: Jr st and cons instr


Medical History and Bioethics 699:
Independent Study in Medical History

Instructor: Staff

To be arranged with instructor.

Not cross-listed

1-3 cr.; C (counts for L&S), A (Advanced)

Time to be arranged

Prerequisites: Jr st and cons instr


Medical History and Bioethics 728:
Biomedical Ethics and Society

Instructor: Linda Hogle

The aims of this course are to provide understandings of the broader social, cultural and political contexts in which bioethical debates and medical practice occur, to explore social science perspectives on medicine and bioethics and to examine the use of qualitative and interdisciplinary methods to conduct research in these areas. Readings and discussion will draw upon research using ethnographic, life history, content, visual and narrative analysis. The course will cover issues in scientific research settings and the clinic. It is designed for the needs of graduate students in the social sciences and humanities, population health sciences, health policy, law, medicine, and health professions.

Not cross-listed

3 cr.; Graduate, basic

M, 12:00-2:30 p.m.

Prerequisites: Graduate standing


Medical History and Bioethics 730:
Ethical Issues in Medicine

Instructor: Norman Fost

To be arranged with instructor.

Not cross-listed

1 cr.; Graduate, advanced

4:00-5:30 TR; 1st 4 to 6 wks

Prerequisites: Med Students, or by consent of instructor


Medical History and Bioethics 734:
Neuroethics Learning Collaborative

Instructors: Linda Hogle and Ron Kalil

Discovery in neuroscience is increasingly affecting all aspects of human life. This course provides a survey of the key ethical, legal and social issues that arise from the influence of neuroscience in education, business, law, health care and the military. Today's neuroscience graduate students will be among the scientists, citizens and policymakers who will lead society through the maze of decisions regarding the appropriate uses of neuroscience. Topics include cognitive enhancements, deep brain stimulation, social uses of neuroimaging, and more.

The course will be offered in a novel format. We will join with students and faculty at the University of Pennsylvania in online sessions with web-based lectures and panel discussions, plus we will meet for discussion sessions. The course is appropriate for students in the following graduate programs: Neuroscience & Public Policy, Neuroscience Training Program, Clinical Neuroengineering and Psychology.

Not cross-listed

1 cr.; Graduate standing.

1:00 pm to 2:15 pm Fridays

Prerequisites: Consent of instructor


Medical History and Bioethics 753:
International Health & Global Society

Instructor: Richard Keller

Advanced readings that examine major problems in modern international health. Focus on epidemiology and disease ecology; political economy of health; migration; quarantine; international health research; cross-cultural healing; mental and maternal health; growth of international health organizations.

Not cross-listed

1 cr.; Graduate, advanced

Time & Place TBA

Prerequisites: Grad st & concurrent reg in MHB, HOS or Pop Hlth 553


Medical History and Bioethics 890:
Reading and Research

Instructor: Staff

To be arranged with instructor.

Not cross-listed

1-3 cr.; A (Advanced)

Time to be arranged

Prereq: Open to all 4th yr Med stdts (8 or 16 wks) & Grad stdts of all other depts (16 wks)


Medical History and Bioethics 919-001:
Biopolitics

Instructors: Richard Keller and Sara Guyer

According to Foucault, in the late-eighteenth century, governments began recognize populations, health, sanitation, sexuality, race, etc. as their domain and to marshal power through the management of human bodies. More recently, the emergence of stem cells, health care, hunger, and human rights, as major political issues, reflects the ongoing centrality of biological life for politics. This course will examine this convergence through a rigorous consideration of the theory of biopolitics and its cross-disciplinary application. We will focus on work in philosophy and literature, but also anthropology, sociology, and history. Topics may include: Biological Citizenship; Biopoetics; Hunger, Food, and Obesity; Biomedicine and subjectivity; etc. Authors: Michel Foucault, Giorgio Agamben, Hannah Arendt, Roberto Esposito, Barbara Johnson, Judith Butler, Lauren Berlant, Philippe Bourgois, Achille Mbembe, Nikolas Rose, Paul Rabinow, among others. Over the course of the semester we also will welcome several guest lecturers into the seminar.

Meets with English 727

3 cr.; Graduate, advanced

W 1:15 -3:15

Prerequisites: Prereq> Cons inst


Medical History and Bioethics 919-002:
The History and Historiography of Eugenics

Instructor: Diane Paul

In the last two decades of the 19th century through at least the first three of this, the view that society should foster the breeding of those who possessed favorable traits and prevent or discourage the breeding of those who did not seemed common sense to most middle-class North Americans and Europeans. This course on the history and historiography of eugenics explores the following questions: Why did the concept of selective human breeding take hold in the late19th century? How crucial to this development was Francis Galton’s effort to demonstrate the hereditary character of mental and moral traits, the new popularity of animal breeding, and publication of Charles Darwin’s evolutionary theory? How did Galton’s work relate to earlier popular doctrines, such as phrenology and physiognomy, which stressed the importance of heredity and its implications for reproduction? Why did eugenics become increasingly popular after the turn of the twentieth century? What role did geneticists, religious leaders, and other groups play in its success? How was eugenics inflected by race and gender? What concrete forms did it take in various countries? How was eugenics linked to public health, and to the feminist, conservation and other social movements? Who opposed it, and for what reasons? How did both advances in genetics and revelations of Nazi atrocities affect its reputation? What lessons have scholars and popular writers drawn from its history, and why are they so fiercely contested? Throughout the seminar, we will be attentive to trends in the scholarly interpretation of eugenics and to current debates over how best to make sense of its fraught history.

Not cross-listed

3 cr.; Graduate, advanced

M 4:00-6:30

Prerequisites: Consent of inst


Medical History and Bioethics 999-001:
Research Ethics

Instructor: Robert Streiffer

Introduction to Research Ethics: For doctoral students in the life sci disciplines not already served by the existing courses in human biomedical research ethics. Satisfies Centr Mol Bio ethics requirement.

Meets with Hort 875

1 cr.; Graduate, advanced

W 1:20 - 2:45

Prerequisites: Consent of instructor


Medical History and Bioethics 999:
Advanced Independent Study

Instructor: Staff

To be arranged with instructor.

Not cross-listed

1-3 cr.; A (Advanced)

Time to be arranged

Prereq: Grad stdts who have the Masters or equiv, or Postdoc fellows who wish to undertake an independent research project.

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