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Health and Medicine in Britain since 1860 (Social History in Perspective) [Paperback]

Anne Hardy
4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
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Book Description

6 Dec 2000 Social History in Perspective
Since 1860, life expectancies and standards of general health have improved dramatically in industrialised societies. In the 1860s, there was little that medicine could do to cure or prevent illness, death rates were high and life expectancy short. Health and Medicine in Britain since 1860 sets out to examine the relationship between health and medicine and how it has changed in Britain in the past 150 years. From the placebo effect to Viagra, through changes in society and in the organisation, practice and expertise of medicine, this volume reviews the processes through which modern expectations of health have become established.

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Health and Medicine in Britain since 1860 (Social History in Perspective) + A Social History of Medicine: Health, Healing and Disease in England, 1750-1950 + Medicine Transformed: Health, Disease and Society in Europe 1800-1930
Price For All Three: 67.11

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Product details

  • Paperback: 240 pages
  • Publisher: Palgrave Macmillan (6 Dec 2000)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0333600118
  • ISBN-13: 978-0333600115
  • Product Dimensions: 13.8 x 21.7 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 440,953 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
  • See Complete Table of Contents

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'Excellent introduction to history of medicine in Britain in the period covered.' - David F. Smith, University of Aberdeen

'Anne Hardy has done those studying, and indeed teaching, the history of medicine a considerable service with this work. Tightly and authoritatively written, without at any point lapsing into obscurity or unnecessarily technical language, the book deals chronologically with the period from the middle of the nineteenth century to the present day.' - John Stewart, Medical History

'There is no directly comparable book to this one; it should therefore prove useful to students and those new to the literature.' - Helen Jones, Social History of Medicine

'In 180 pages of text Anne Hardy provides an excellent survey, indeed a wide ranging discussion, of the changes and developments over the past 140 years.' - The Newsletter of the Australian Society of the History of Medicine

'[Hardy's] textbook is now the best available on health and medicine in twentieth-century Britain, and deserves a wide readership among history and social policy undergraduates.' - John Welshman, Lancaster University

'An excellent, concise, introduction.' - Dr P.J. Maguire, University of Brighton

'The book is written in a clear and concise manner and will certainly encourage the development of a deep interest in the area.' - Raymond Pate, Southport College

'A very good, useful history.' - Dave Backwith, Anglia Polytechnic University

'An excellent, readable, current text that deals with the different dimensions of the subject to considerable effect; students I've shown the book to have been impressed.' - Richard Brown, A-Level Lecturer, Manshead School

'Hardy has produced a skilful history which triumphs in highlighting the social determinants of health and succeeds in placing medicine in its wider political and economic context.' - Sally Sheard, University of Liverpool

About the Author

ANNE HARDY is a Lecturer in the History of Modern Medicine at the Wellcome Centre for the History of Medicine, University College London.

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4.0 out of 5 stars A Valuable Contribution to Historiography 20 Oct 2010
Anne Hardy presented herself with an enormous task when attempting to condense 140 years of British medical history into 234 pages. It is clear that from 1860, Britain saw wide-ranging developments in health and medicine and this is reflected in a vast historiography. Therefore, any attempt at a comprehensive overview would require a historian with advanced skills and sound judgement. Hardy attempted to plot the key events in British medical history from the 19th century through to the dawn of the twenty-first century in an uncomplicated and thematic fashion. A number of important points can be made on her work.

Hardy's work has a number of notable strengths. First of all, her chronological and thematic approach is beneficial to the reader. This chronological approach has the benefit of plotting the development of health and medicine throughout the period, which helps the reader to understand how our current form of medical care was created. The thematic breakdown makes big topics far more digestible. In terms of content, Hardy's analysis of civilian health during the Great War was outstanding, particularly charting civilian mortality from infectious disease, lack of healthcare provision and the 1918 influenza outbreak (Ch. 2). This fills gaps left by writers such as, Marwick and De Groot, whose works are considered outstanding in charting the civilian experience of the war. Hardy has made a good attempt at surveying health and medicine in the post-war period, which is not an easy task, due to the vast range of developments starting with the establishment of the National Health Service. However, this good work will always be overshadowed by the excellent work of Berridge on the same period.
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