Category: Health / Medicine

Excerpt: Home Grown, by Isaac Campos

Yet despite today’s typical view of marijuana as a “soft” drug in comparison to, say, the opiates and cocaine, Mexicans of a century ago believed it to be perhaps the “hardest” drug of them all, one that triggered sudden paroxysms and delirious violence. Continue Reading Excerpt: Home Grown, by Isaac Campos

Isaac Campos: Today’s Synthetic Drugs Provoking New Reefer Madness

Have the recently reported bizarre behaviors related to synthetic drugs been primarily caused by these chemical compounds or by the set and setting of their ingestion? The answer is still unclear, but history and science suggest that anxiety produced by unfamiliarity with these drugs and the accompanying horror stories in the press are probably contributing in some way. Continue Reading Isaac Campos: Today’s Synthetic Drugs Provoking New Reefer Madness

New E-book Short: Women and the Politics of Sterilization

In this UNC Press e-book short, Johanna Schoen explains the legal construction of North Carolina’s sterilization program, which lasted far longer than similar programs in other states, and demonstrates through the stories of several women how the state was able to deny women who were poor, uneducated, African American, or “promiscuous” reproductive autonomy in multiple ways. Continue Reading New E-book Short: Women and the Politics of Sterilization

Book Excerpt: DDT & the American Century, by David Kinkela

Müller’s discovery generated little international publicity. Europe was engulfed in a continental war, and the United States remained an interested observer. But as the United States entered the war, which expanded across continents and into the tropics, where the threat of insect-borne diseases increased, military health officials on all sides of the conflict demanded new methods to control disease, and DDT was positioned to play an important role in the war effort. Continue Reading Book Excerpt: DDT & the American Century, by David Kinkela

North Carolina’s eugenics history: Testimonies from victims (video)

Rock Center with Brian Williams airs a story about North Carolina’s history of state-ordered sterilizations, featuring audio recordings of social workers involved in the program that were uncovered in Johanna Schoen’s research on the subject in the 1990s. Continue Reading North Carolina’s eugenics history: Testimonies from victims (video)

Guest post: Karey Harwood on Posthumous Reproduction

Today we welcome a guest post from Karey Harwood, author of The Infertility Treadmill: Feminist Ethics, Personal Choice, and the Use of Reproductive Technologies.  Here she ponders the bioethical issues surrounding a couple who want to use frozen sperm from their deceased son and an egg donor to become grandparents.  While the idea of posthumous birth is nothing new, posthumous… Continue Reading Guest post: Karey Harwood on Posthumous Reproduction

EPIC SALE TIME!!

It’s EPIC SALE TIME! Over 700 UNC Press books are on sale! Read more about the huge deals here. Continue Reading EPIC SALE TIME!!

Shawn Smallman on The Concept of Security: The U.S. Drug War, Mexico, and Portugal

We welcome a guest post today from Shawn Smallman, coauthor (with Kimberley Brown) of Introduction to International and Global Studies.  Their new book is a thematic introduction to the intellectual and structural underpinnings of globalization.  Here, Smallman shows how increased regulation and security can actually exacerbate the issues of the international drug war that those measures try to quell. -Alex… Continue Reading Shawn Smallman on The Concept of Security: The U.S. Drug War, Mexico, and Portugal

Carolyn de la Pena: What’s that diet soda teaching you?

We welcome a guest post today from Carolyn de la Peña, author of Empty Pleasures: The Story of Artificial Sweeteners from Saccharin to Splenda. In her book, de la Pena sheds light on the invention, production, marketing, regulation, and consumption of sugar substitutes such as saccharin, Sucaryl, NutraSweet, and Splenda. In this post, she describes how these “sweet cheats” have… Continue Reading Carolyn de la Pena: What’s that diet soda teaching you?

Reverby recalls discovery, Hadler puts Guatemala case in context

Earlier this week we posted lots of links to headlines about Susan Reverby’s discovery of U.S. medical experiments on nonconsenting Guatemalans in the 1940s. Today, she wrote in more detail about the discovery of this horrific medical history over at the Hastings Center’s Bioethics Forum: What might have been buried in an historical journal, however, took another step. To make… Continue Reading Reverby recalls discovery, Hadler puts Guatemala case in context

Karey Harwood: IVF Kids: Are They Really All Right?

On Monday the Nobel Prize in Medicine was awarded to the biologist who helped develop in vitro fertilization (IVF). As a New York Times op-ed noted, the honoree is “a man who was reviled, in his time, as doing work that was considered the greatest threat to humanity since the atomic bomb.” Thirty-two years later, there are millions of healthy,… Continue Reading Karey Harwood: IVF Kids: Are They Really All Right?

Susan Reverby Uncovers History of U.S. Medical Testing on Guatemalans

You’ve probably already heard: last Friday President Obama called President Alvaro Colom of Guatemala to apologize for a public health outrage committed 64 years ago.  In 1946, American doctors, with the support of the Public Health Service, conducted experiments on prisoners, the insane, soldiers, and prostitutes, who were initially used to infect the prisoners. Though the institutions and governments involved… Continue Reading Susan Reverby Uncovers History of U.S. Medical Testing on Guatemalans

Obama’s HIV/AIDS Strategy: Real Change or Pocket Change?

We welcome a guest post today from Jennifer Brier, author of Infectious Ideas: U.S. Political Responses to the AIDS Crisis. When the Obama administration announced a new HIV/AIDS strategy, we asked Brier to unpack the news and help give historical perspective to the new plan.–ellen Reading President Obama’s new HIV/AIDS strategy, released on July 13, 2010, was alternately exciting and… Continue Reading Obama’s HIV/AIDS Strategy: Real Change or Pocket Change?

Changing the Nursing Care Model

Doctors Nortin M. Hadler and Mark E. Williams recently authored a piece about the changing dynamics of healthcare after retirement, a system dating to the 1960s. They say the modern notion of Americans spend the last years of life has become incredibly sterilized since the influx of for-profit nursing homes. With increasing lifespans and complexity of treatment, what was good… Continue Reading Changing the Nursing Care Model

Interview: Judith Walzer Leavitt

This weekend is Father’s Day (hope you didn’t forget!) and in honor of pops and grandpas everywhere, we have an interview with Judith Walzer Leavitt, author of Make Room for Daddy. Drawing from letters, journals and interviews with fathers, Leavitt investigates how the role of the father changed from the 1940s to the 1980s. Once banished to the waiting room,… Continue Reading Interview: Judith Walzer Leavitt

Gooooooooal!

The 2010 FIFA World Cup is upon us! The frenzied fans are coming out from every nook and cranny to cheer on their teams, painted head to toe in team colors and fervently waving flags. An event that only occurs once every four years, this year’s tournament is hosting 32 teams in South Africa and, like past gatherings, will keep… Continue Reading Gooooooooal!

Improving the Health of North Carolinians, Then and Now

Today we welcome a guest post from William W. McLendon, M.D., coauthor, with Floyd W. Denny Jr. and William B. Blythe, of Bettering the Health of the People: W. Reece Berryhill, the UNC School of Medicine, and the North Carolina Good Health Movement. The book explores the history of North Carolina’s postwar effort to provide health care for all N.C.… Continue Reading Improving the Health of North Carolinians, Then and Now