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Regular version of the site

190068 Saint Petersburg
123 Griboedov channel, Room 123

Phone:+7 (812)786-92-49 

Postal address: 
190068 Saint Petersburg
123 Griboedov channel

Department Head Adrian A. Selin
Academic Supervisor Evgeniy Anisimov
Remembering the Neoliberal Turn: Economic Change and Collective Memory in Eastern Europe after 1989

Gökarıksel S., Gontarska O., Hilmar T. et al.

L.: Routledge, 2023.

Book chapter
The Stolbovo Treaty and Tracing the Border in Ingria in 1617–1618

Adrian Selin.

In bk.: Sweden, Russia, and the 1617 Peace of Stolbovo. Vol. 14. Turnhout: Brepols Publishers, 2024. P. 99-118.

Working paper
The Image of the Past in Ciro Spontone’s ‘Historia Della Transilvania’

Khvalkov E., Levin F., Кузнецова А. Д.

Working Papers of Humanities. WP. Издательский дом НИУ ВШЭ, 2021

Society and Health in Historical Perspective

Academic Year
Instruction in English
ECTS credits
Delivered by:
Department of History
Elective course
4 year, 3 module


Course Syllabus


This course surveys the history of medical knowledge and practice from antiquity to the early 20th century. The course will explore a number of ongoing themes: race, bodily difference, and medicine; medicine and the environment; women, gender, and medicine; the history of the body; the history of sexuality; and the close connections between forms of social order and forms of medical knowledge.
Learning Objectives

Learning Objectives

  • Students will understand the fundamental questions and methods of the history of medicine; they will develop critical skills of assessing medicine’s complex role in contemporary society.
Expected Learning Outcomes

Expected Learning Outcomes

  • Student will be able to read analytically academic literature for seminars, summarise it, highlight the main arguments, and critically evaluate them
  • Students will be able to discuss academic literature during a seminar and participate in a group discussion in English
  • Students will be able to compare the views of different authors on the same subject, analyse and evaluate the ideas of other students suggested during seminar discussions
Course Contents

Course Contents

  • Introduction
    Health and disease from a historical perspective. The practitioners' perspective and critical social history of medicine.
  • European medicine in the 16th-17th centuries
    European medicine in the Renaissance and the Scientific Revolution. Population, health and the early modern state
  • Health, medicine and modernity (1)
    The making of the medical professions; epidemic diseases, sanitation movement and public health in the 19th century
  • Health, medicine and modernity (2)
    Scientific medicine in the 19th century
  • Epidemics and the Making of Modern Public Health
    Epidemics and the Making of Modern Public Health
  • Medicine and Twentieth-Century Warfare
    Medicine and Twentieth-Century Warfare
  • Pharmaceuticalization of Everyday Life
    Pharmaceuticalization of Everyday Life
  • Global Health
    Global Health
Assessment Elements

Assessment Elements

  • non-blocking Participation in seminars
  • non-blocking Short oral presentation (a summary of a scholarly article)
  • non-blocking Take-home written exam
    A student chooses one of a list of questions announced at the last seminar and is expected to produce a written answer of 500-1000 words length. The deadline for submitting an answer is 10 days before the formal date of exam. If the answer is shorter than 500 words the grade for this assignment will be reduced by 2 points.
  • non-blocking Analytical reading - controlled with Perusall (www.perusall.com)
    Students' comprehension of an assigned reading material is checked through Perusall - for further instruction see perusall.com
Interim Assessment

Interim Assessment

  • Interim assessment (3 module)
    0.25 * Analytical reading - controlled with Perusall (www.perusall.com) + 0.25 * Participation in seminars + 0.25 * Short oral presentation (a summary of a scholarly article) + 0.25 * Take-home written exam


Recommended Core Bibliography

  • Bynum, W. F. (2008). The History of Medicine: A Very Short Introduction. Oxford: OUP Oxford. Retrieved from http://search.ebscohost.com/login.aspx?direct=true&site=eds-live&db=edsebk&AN=363643

Recommended Additional Bibliography

  • Porter, R. (2001). Bodies Politic : Disease, Death and Doctors in Britain, 1650-1900. London: Reaktion Books. Retrieved from http://search.ebscohost.com/login.aspx?direct=true&site=eds-live&db=edsebk&AN=440604