Surrender, Discovery, and Recovery: The Many Meanings of Adoption

To write about mid-twentieth century adoption practices in the United States is to position oneself at the heart of dozens of competing narratives. As explored in other texts such as Ann Fessler’s The Girls Who Went Away: The Hidden History of Women Who Surrendered Children for Adoption in the Decades before Roe v. Wade, to… Read more →

An Emancipatory Vocation: Nursing in Quebec, 1912–1974

Established in 1967, the first Royal Commission on the Status of Women, also known as “the Bird Commission,” emerged following pressure from women’s groups calling for an inquiry into the status of women in Canada. The commission and its 1970 Report of the Royal Commission on the Status of Women in Canada was a major step for… Read more →

Ending the War on Science: A Review of Maya Goldenberg’s Vaccine Hesitancy

With three highly efficacious vaccines widely available for COVID-19 in the United States (which were developed in record time, breaking the record set by a mumps vaccine in the 1960s), we are beginning to see the light at the end of the COVID-19 pandemic. But the effort to reach herd immunity and reduce the COVID-19… Read more →

A Farewell but Not a Goodbye

Today marks the nine-year anniversary of Nursing Clio. Nine years! It’s basically eighteen in blog years. We’ve been around for so long that we’ve seen several amazing academic blogs come and go, while we still chug along. So Happy Anniversary, Nursing Clio! And farewell. Today, I’m announcing my retirement as Nursing Clio’s executive editor. It’s… Read more →

Topper’s GI Benefits, Good Homes, and Vivisection Fears: The Treatment of World War II War Dog Veterans

In 1946, a German Shepherd named Topper made headlines in newspapers throughout the United States. Discharged from the K-9 Corps in February 1945, Topper had, according to owner Horace Turner, “not been up to snuff.” Turner sought treatment for the dog under the GI Bill, claiming overexertion during military service had weakened Topper’s heart.[1] The… Read more →

“The Club of the Four Hs”: HIV/AIDS, Race, and Neoliberalism in Argentina

During my childhood in Buenos Aires, adults usually told us to be careful while using telephones and cinema seats because people diagnosed with HIV could hide infected syringes in these “dark spots” to spread the virus. Generally portraying people with HIV as resentful and dangerous, popular representations activated historical racial and sexual boundaries that legitimated… Read more →

Mary Seacole and the Politics of Writing Black History in 1980s Britain

Mary Seacole, the nineteenth-century Jamaican-Scottish nurse known to many as the “Black Florence Nightingale,” has a complicated history in British public memory. After essentially disappearing for a century after her death, Seacole was “revived” with the republication of her 1857 autobiography by editors Ziggi Alexander and Audrey Dewjee at the feminist Falling Water press in… Read more →

Making Medical History: The Sociologist Who Helped Legalize Birth Control

When sociology and economics professor Norman E. Himes published The Medical History of Contraception in 1936, he had made a daring, yet tactical move. At the time, contraception was not, legally speaking, considered a medical matter at all. Under the Comstock Act, which had been in effect since 1873, all literature and devices used for… Read more →

“Blindness and Boldness”: Haptic Imaginaries from the Operating Theater to the Pandemic Everyday

“It’s like driving a car in the fog”: The Operating Theater A torso, swollen with gas and yellow with antiseptic – this was the only glimpse of the patient’s body visible among the draped blue sterile sheets of the operating theatre. Poking through four quarter-inch incisions across the lower abdomen were the tools of surgical… Read more →

Right All the Way Through: Dr. Minerva Goodman and the Stockton Mask Debate during the 1918-1919 Influenza Epidemic

During the 1918-19 influenza epidemic, Stockton, California, adopted a mask ordinance three times, totalling more than seventy days. In late December 1918, Dr. Minerva Goodman, the recently appointed city health officer, lost a debate about ending the second mask ordinance to those advocating a return to normal activities. Just weeks later, as cases rose again,… Read more →