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Mission and Programs Overview

The Department of History and Philosophy of Medicine consists of four major units: the Academic Programs, the Clendening Library, the Clendening Museum, and the KU Medical Center Archives. The Department unites these programs in its mission to advance understanding and application of ethical, historical and social analysis of health, medicine and healing.

Using the combined resources of the department we strive to teach students and colleagues how historical, ethical, and societal factors influence health and health care; and we inform our teaching through scholarship in the history and philosophy of medicine that merits national recognition.

Through our ethics programs we seek to deepen a moral appreciation of medicine's role in healing with teaching programs in the medical school and the KU Hospital residency programs combined with an active ethics consultation service in the KU Hospital. The department also lends support and leadership for the KU Hospital Ethics Committee.

Finally, the Clendening Library, Museum, and Archives act as careful stewards of our extensive historical collections, reach out to KUMC and the broader community to teach about the history of medicine, and promote the use and appreciation of the collections by scholars and students; while also seeking to add some color and variety to the life of the medical center.

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Last modified: Sep 17, 2020
News and Events

Clinical Culture and Diversity Series: Dehumanization and the Symbolic Gaze Production of Biomedical Knowledge
Tuesday, April 20 at 12 noon via Zoom
Jason Glenn, PhD, Associate Professor, Dept. of History and Philosophy of Medicine
Register Here 

Ralph Hermon Major Noon Seminar
Thursday, April 29 at 12 noon via Zoom
Sarah Naramore, PhD, Assistant Professor, Dept. of Humanities and Social Sciences, Northwest Missouri State University
"Preparing the Next Generation of 'Republican Machines': Education in the Work of Benjamin Rush"
Zoom link

Ralph Hermon Major Noon Seminar
Wednesday, May 5 at 12 noon via Zoom
Sarah Robins, PhD, Associate Professor, Dept. of Philosophy, University of Kansas
"How Optogenetics is Changing the Way We Think about Memory and Its Disorders"
Zoom link

ECC Webinar - How Pandemics End - Dr. Carla Keirns

Tho Nguyen, M3, 2020 recipient of The Lois Margaret French and John David Armstrong, II Humanities in Medicine Award. 

Doctoral candidate Alyssa Peterson named first recipient of the joint History of Science and Medicine Fellowship

Pediatrics Group Offers ‘Long Overdue' Apology for Racist Past

History of medicine chair chosen for prestigious DeBakey national fellowship