Fellowships: Mellon/ACLS Scholars and Society Fellowships

The American Council of Learned Societies (ACLS) is pleased to announce a new initiative to advance publicly engaged scholarship in the humanities. The Mellon/ACLS Scholars & Society program, made possible by a grant from The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, will support humanities scholars who seek to partner with nonacademic organizations in their research and encourage innovation in doctoral education at their universities.

Inspired by the Mellon/ACLS Public Fellows program, which demonstrates the dynamic value of doctoral education by placing recent humanities PhDs in top nonprofit and government organizations, the Scholars & Society program will encourage faculty to explore connections between humanities research and broader society while in residence at a US-based cultural, media, government, policy, or community organization of their choice. The fellowships also provide resources and training that will enable fellows to incorporate best practices of public scholarship into doctoral education on their campuses. ACLS developed the program in consultation with academic and nonprofit leaders with extensive experience in the realm of publicly engaged scholarship.

“Just as ACLS strives to increase funding for core humanities research through a variety of fellowship and grant programs, we also recognize the urgent need to promote the broader circulation of that knowledge across all sectors of society,” said John Paul Christy, director of public programs at ACLS. “We look forward to supporting scholars who can be ambassadors for the humanities beyond their campus communities, and who will instill an ethos of reflective public engagement in their scholarship for years to come.”

The fellowships are open to faculty who hold tenured positions in PhD-granting departments or programs at universities in the United States. In the pilot year of the program, ACLS will award 12 fellowships for the 2019-20 academic year. Each fellowship carries a stipend of $75,000, plus funds for research, travel, and related project and hosting costs.

The goal of the fellowship year should be a major research project in the humanities or humanistic social sciences that treats a significant issue in society, such as democratic governance; technological change; racism and inequality; environmental change; economic exclusion; or migration and immigration, to name just a few possibilities. Fellows will select host organizations based on their capacity to advance their research.

Fellows will participate in two workshops over the course of the fellowship year. These workshops will encourage collaboration between scholars and organizations engaged in public scholarship and will support institution-building efforts to train humanities faculty and doctoral students who are interested in developing research agendas that have purchase both inside and outside of the academy.

Proposals must be submitted through ACLS’s online application system, which will begin accepting applications in late July. Further information about the program, including eligibility criteria and FAQ, is available online here. The application deadline is October 24, 2018.

Contact: fellowships@acls.org

Jobs: History of Gender and Health, University of Michigan

History of Gender and Health. The University of Michigan’s Departments of Women’s Studies and History seek qualified applicants for a jointly-appointed assistant professor tenure-track, or at the rank of associate or full professor with tenure, in the history of gender and health. We seek candidates with scholarly expertise and teaching experience and interests in the history of gender and health in non-U.S. locations such as East Asia, Mexico, Central America, or Africa.  The ideal candidate will have demonstrated an ability to implement a multidisciplinary approach that includes history and women’s/gender/feminist studies. Related interests may include: science, technology, and society studies; sexuality studies; ethnic and/or area studies; environmental history; health care; or intersectionality.

This is a university-year appointment with an expected start date of September 1, 2019. Interested applicants are required to hold a Ph.D. degree prior to the appointment in women’s studies, history or related disciplines. Applicants must demonstrate evidence of excellence in both teaching and research.

Candidates should submit a digital application dossier via email attachment (in PDF format) to WS-History-Search2018@umich.edu.  Applicants should provide: • Cover letter addressed to Chair of the History of Gender and Health Search Committee • Curriculum Vitae • Statement of current and future research plans • Writing sample (no more than 25 pages) • Statement of teaching philosophy and experience (or a teaching portfolio containing such a statement) • Evidence of teaching excellence (i.e., student evaluations of teaching, course syllabi, teaching awards that can be part of a teaching portfolio) In addition, candidates should provide three letters of recommendation, which should be sent directly to WS-History-Search2018@umich.edu from the signer’s (or credentialing service’s) institutional email address.  Deadline to apply for full consideration for the position is October 1, 2018. The search committee will begin reviewing applications on October 8, 2018, and will continue until an appointment is made.  Women and minorities are encouraged to apply. The University of Michigan is supportive of the needs of dual career couples and is an Equal Opportunity / Affirmative Action Employer.

Calls for Papers: Representing Abortion

Call for papers: Representing Abortion
Edited by Rachel Alpha Johnston Hurst

Deadline for proposals: October 1, 2018
Email: rahurst@stfx.ca

Rosalind Pollack Petchesky argued in 1987 that “feminists and other prochoice advocates have all too readily ceded the visual terrain,” abandoning the field of fetal imagery to antiabortion activists (264).  She called for new fetal images that “recontextualized the fetus” (Petchesky 1987, 287).  Such images would locate the fetus in a body (and a social context) outside of what Carol A. Stabile would later describe as “an inhospitable waste land, at war with the ‘innocent person’ within” that is a dominant theme in antiabortion discourse (1992, 179).  Recently, Shannon Stettner wrote that although there are more ordinary stories about abortion circulating as a political response to threats to abortion access, they are typically anonymous and online, and so it remains a reality that “we are still a long way from a world in which women will not feel obliged to conceal the fact that they had an abortion” (2016, 7).  Even in circumstances that support access to abortion, abortion can remain a secret: invisible and unheard.

How do we represent abortion?  What work does representing abortion do?  Can representing abortion challenge and change conventional reproductive rights understandings of abortion that circulate publicly?  Will reclaiming representations of abortion help publicly express the “things we cannot say” about abortion from a pro-choice perspective, like grief and multiple abortions (Ludlow 2008, p. 29)?  Alternatively, does taking back control of representing abortion from antiabortion activists provide a space to “celebrate” abortion as a central component of reproductive justice (Thomsen 2013, 149)?  This edited collection begins from these questions to consider how artists, writers, performers, and activists create space to make abortion visible, audible, and palpable within contexts dominated by antiabortion imagery centred on the fetus and the erasure of the person considering or undergoing abortion.  This collection will build on the recent exciting proliferation of scholarly work on abortion that investigates the history, politics, and law of abortion, as well as antiabortion movements and experiences of pregnancy loss (Haugeberg 2017; Johnstone 2017; Lind & Deveau 2017; Sanger 2017; Saurette & Gordon 2016; Smyth 2016; Stettner 2016; Stettner, Burnett, & Hay 2017; Watson 2018).  Central to the considerations in this proposed collection is the intellectual and political work that these artworks, texts, performances, and actions do and make possible.  Contemporary and historical analyses are welcomed.

Some possible topics include, but are not limited to:

  • “ordinary” stories about abortion told through a variety of media (e.g. “The Abortion Diaries Podcast” by Melissa Madera; various blogs and websites like “My Abortion. My Life”)
  • abortion memoirs (e.g. Marianne Apostolides’ Deep Salt Water; Kassi Underwood’s May Cause Love: An Unexpected Journey of Enlightenment After Abortion)
  • visual art (e.g. Laia Abril’s On Abortion; Paula Rego’s The Abortion Pastels)
  • making the abortion procedure visible, audible, and palpable in abortion support services (e.g. offering the option to view products of conception; abortion support zines)
  • activist art and performance (e.g. the Abortion Caravan in Canada; Chi Nguyen’s “5.4 MILLION AND COUNTING” quilt in Texas; Maria Campbell’s mixed media art on Prince Edward Island; Heather Ault’s travelling graphic art exhibit4000 Years for Choice; #RepealThe8th protest art in Ireland)
  • plays (e.g. Julia Samuels’ I Told My Mum I Was Going On An RE Trip; Jane Martin’s Keely and Du)
  • films (e.g. Poppy Liu’s Names of Women; Tracy Droz Tragos’ Abortion: Stories Women Tell)

To submit a proposal for inclusion in this collection, please submit a 500 word abstract, a working title, and a 100 word biographical statement to rahurst@stfx.ca.  Proposals must be received on or before October 1, 2018.  Full papers will be invited no later than November 1, 2018, and the abstracts will be used to prepare a book proposal to be submitted to refereed academic publishers.  Complete manuscripts will be due on June 1, 2019, so they can be revised by October 1, 2019 to submit to the publisher.

Fellowships: New York Academy of Medicine Klemperer and Helfand Fellowships

Applications are currently being accepted for the 2019 cycle of The New York Academy of Medicine Library’s two history of medicine fellowships: the Paul Klemperer Fellowship in the History of Medicine and the Audrey and William H. Helfand Fellowship in the History of Medicine and Public Health.  Information about the two residential fellowships, along with application materials and instructions for applying, can be found here:  https://www.nyam.org/awards-grants/library-fellowships/

Questions about the fellowships or the application process may be directed to me.

Arlene Shaner, MA MLS
Historical Collections Librarian
212.822.7313 office

The New York Academy of Medicine
1216 Fifth Avenue | New York, NY 10029

Calls for Papers: Health in Medicine and Visual Arts, 1300-1550

Renaissance Society of America Annual Conference
Toronto, 17-19 March 2019

Session title: Health in Medicine and Visual Arts, 1300-1550

Artists and architects contributed to cultures of health in medieval and early modern societies, yet their ties to medical practice are often overlooked in modern scholarship. This session invites historians across disciplines to compare their approaches to visual cultures of medicine between 1300 and 1550. Which perspectives and methods might be productively shared among historians of medicine, science, art, architecture, and other specialties focused on care for the body, mind, and soul? A key objective is to advance research on interactions between learned medicine (i.e., taught in universities) and visual arts.

Papers are invited to address the body of knowledge by which artifacts and monuments were believed to be therapeutic and/or protective. How and why were such effects ascribed to images, objects, and spaces?

Topics might include
– images in medical astrology: instructions for their making and use
– restorative spaces in domestic and institutional buildings
– therapeutic works on paper: books, almanacs, calendars, prints
– apothecaries and foreign ingredients in the service of medicine and pigment-making
– objects and environments used in regimens for preserving health and hygiene

Intercultural, interregional, and transoceanic topics are welcome.

The respondent is Dr. Mitchell Merback, Associate Professor, Johns Hopkins University.

Paper proposals are due by August 5, 2018 to Jordan Famularo, Institute of Fine Arts, New York University (jjf376@nyu.edu). Proposals should include two documents: an abstract with paper title (250 words maximum) and CV. Please indicate the presenter’s title and affiliation.

Submissions are considered commitments to attend the conference and to be responsible for registration and membership fees, if this session is accepted into the conference. Submission guidelines are available at https://www.rsa.org/page/2019SubmissionsGuide.

Lectures: Online CME in the History of Medicine, Johns Hopkins University

The Department of the History of Medicine at Johns Hopkins is proud to introduce new online Continuing Medical Education modules that provide a historical perspective on issues of relevance to clinical practice today.

For more information on these CME modules entitled “Professionalism in Historical Context” and “History of Global Health,” visit https://www.hopkinshistoryofmedicine.org/content/online-cme-modules-history-medicine-0.

Calls for Papers: Medical Narratives of Ill Health


Humanities special issue: “Medical Narratives of Ill Health”

The field of literature and medicine has been steadily growing over the past four decades, solidifying itself as a vital component of the medical and health humanities. The intersection of literature and medicine enriches how we view issues of health, disease, and care, particularly in how we value the individual’s narrative of health and ill health to help with diagnosis, treatment, and the relationship between the practitioner and the patient. In an attempt to wade through the difficult terrain of defining disease and health, Kenneth Boyd provides the following medical definitions (adapted from Marshall Marinker’s earlier work): “Disease […] is the pathological process, deviation from a biological norm. Illness is the patient’s experience of ill health, sometimes when no disease can be found. Sickness is the role negotiated with society” (Boyd, 1997). What Boyd reveals about these definitions is that one allows for the individual’s experience of ill health (illness), while the other two rely on others’ perceptions of ill health. Thus, he concludes, a clear definition of disease (and even sickness) is elusive: “to call something a disease is a value judgement, relatively unproblematic in cases when it is widely shared, but more contentious when people disagree about it” (Boyd, 1997). This contentious space has widened during the modern medical era (early nineteenth century to the present day), as medical reliance on technology favors an objective identification of disease. However, literary works, through both personal accounts and fictional scenarios, challenge this singular narrative of disease and ill health provided by the medical community.

For this special issue of Humanities, we seek to explore how literature from the early nineteenth century to the present day engages with and challenges modern medical authority when it comes to understanding disease, illness, and sickness. Papers for this special issue of Humanities should focus on narratives—fictional and/or non-fictional (such as medical realism, science fiction, pathographies, medical reports, etc.)—that explore the contentious space of disagreement between medicine, society, and the individual. Authors might consider topics such as: disease as metaphor; social vs. medical definitions of disease; patient agency and individual experiences of illness; challenges to medical technology’s presumed objectivity; representations of contagion and/or public health—or any other topics that relate to better understanding literary representations of disease, illness, and/or sickness.

Articles should be no more than 8000 words, inclusive of notes. The deadline for submission of articles to the guest editor is January 10, 2019: please email articles directly to Amanda M. Caleb at acaleb@misericordia.edu. The deadline for final drafts is February 28, 2019, with expected puplication in early Summer 2019. Please consult the journal’s webpage for formatting instructions: http://www.mdpi.com/journal/humanities/special_issues/contagion. 

Dr. Amanda Caleb
Guest Editor

Contact Info: Dr. Amanda M. Caleb, Misericordia University
Contact Email: acaleb@misericordia.edu

Jobs: Part-time Research Associate

A clinician historian seeks a part-time Research Associate

The Research Associate should have doctoral training in medical history, and experience in publishing articles in journals related to medical history. The research topic will be selected by the candidate but its focus will be modified, as needed, by the sponsor. The candidate will be responsible conducting the investigation and for providing progress reports. The primary aim of this research endeavor is to publish the work in a highly competitive journal, preferably related to medical history. The sponsor will participate in narrowing the focus of the research proposal and in editing or modifying the completed manuscript prior to submission. The candidate and sponsor would be co-authors on the published article.

To apply: submit the following application materials: 1) curriculum vitae; and 2) cover letter explaining qualifications, accomplishments in research and teaching, and collaborative research efforts. The application should be submitted electronically to mayone53@gmail.com

The sponsor will be supporting the candidate from personal funds. Remuneration for completing the project will be US $ 5000, payable in installments, if desired. Additional compensation of an equal or greater amount will be offered depending on the journal in which the article gets accepted for publication. All inquiries for this collaborative work will be kept in strict confidence.

Calls for Papers: The Impact of Politics on Sexual and Reproductive Health and Rights


Volume 27 Number 54, May 2019

Submission deadline 31 October 2018

RHM is compiling a themed issue to be published in May 2019 on the impact of politics on sexual and reproductive health and rights (SRHR). The purpose of the issue is to assimilate and highlight the consequences of and interconnections between political activities, systems or change on SRHR – whether at global, regional, state, or local levels, and at their intersections, especially in low- and middle-income settings.

The definition of politics is diverse and wide-ranging. Put succinctly by Lasswell in 1936, politics is about ‘who gets what, when and how’1, indicating its close association with power and influence. Politics has many facets. It can be an effective means of expanding evidence-informed action, representation, voice, agency, community engagement, co-operation, and opportunity for progressive change. Perceptions of politics can be negatively and emotionally charged; associated with ideology, dishonesty, self-interest, deceit and the unresponsiveness of institutions. Political activities and their impacts occur at different levels: they may be momentous global events, or they may take place locally, with effects at regional, national or local level. Politics may cause problems, solve them, or both, at the same time. Unintended and unforeseen consequences may result. People and population groups can be differentially affected by political actions in many ways: influencing laws and rights; determining war or peace; defining the distribution of information, wealth and health care; or shaping social cohesion2,3. Political decisions or expressions can have consequences impacting on the lives of individuals, including women and girls, and their ability to exercise and access SRHR. Institutions (such as multilateral organisations or non-government organisations) can also be affected, with changes to funding, established donor mechanisms, programmatic areas and capacity of organizations to engage with SRHR.

We live in a world of constant flux. The quickly changing political contexts of recent years have influenced SRHR discourse, access to rights, funding, services and lived experiences, and will continue to do so. In this call for papers, RHM will accept reviews, research articles, perspectives, commentaries and personal narratives which discuss and highlight positive, negative or mixed impacts of global, regional, national or local politics on SRHR. Submissions which make connections between these different levels will be of interest, for example, how global or regional politics can impact on the national and local. Papers submitted may identify political determinants of SRHR, document different forms of activism or resistance, explore interactions, trace pathways for change, or describe short term, intermediate, long term or ultimate outcomes.

Examples of relevant topics in SRHR related to contemporary political events include:

  • The shift towards right-wing and/or populist politics occurring across many countries and regions
  • The power of the #MeToo social media movement against sexual assault and harassment
  • Reinstatement of the Global Gag Rule prohibiting US funding to foreign organizations that offer abortion services or information
  • Demographic transition in China and its U-turn from a harsh one-child policy, to plans for boosting birth rates
  • The recurrence of widespread violence in Congo, with rape and sexual abuse used to intimidate in a context where lack of public services and transgressions of SRHR committed in the wake of the war in the 1990s remain unaddressed
  • The role of political activism and civil society in Senegal, with documented successes in the control of HIV/AIDS, despite its low-income status as a country
  • The rise in popularity of right wing politics in Costa Rica after the Inter-American Court of Human Rights ruled that gay marriage should be legalised
  • Protests in Iran by women against compulsory covering of their heads in public

The relevance of today’s politics on SRHR is clear, but not always well-documented. In this RHM collection, we aspire to compile and generate a diverse range of perspectives and evidence to inspire debate, inform intervention and effect change that will lead to better lives for people. Politics will determine whose SRHR are protected, when universal health care and respect for rights can be realised, and how it will be achieved.

We would like to remind potential authors of articles that in addition to our regular calls for themed papers, RHM also accepts other papers related to SRHR on an ongoing basis. Some of these may later be brought together or listed as key topics. We accept a wide range of article types, from full research reports to short personal perspectives, letters and book reviews. Please see instructions for authors at: https://www.tandfonline.com/action/authorSubmission?journalCode=zrhm20&page=instructions


  1. Lasswell H. Politics: Who Gets What, When, How. London, Whittlesey House, 1936.
  2. WHO. Sexual health, human rights and the law. http://www.who.int/reproductivehealth/publications/sexual_health/sexual-health-human-rights-law/en/ June 2015.
  3. Miller AM, Gruskin S, Cottingham J, Kismödi E. Sound and Fury ‒ engaging with the politics and the law of sexual rights. Reproductive Health Matters, 2015; 23: 46, 7-15, DOI: 10.1016/j.rhm.2015.11.006
Contact Email: editorial@rhmatters.org

Calls for Papers: Redefining Leprosy/Disease through Heritage Preservation of Colonial Sites in Asia

Call for Papers: Redefining Leprosy/Disease through Heritage Preservation of Colonial Sites in Asia
Date: January 18, 2019 to January 19, 2019
The Challenge

The re-discovery / re-interpretation of leprosy in the late nineteenth century by the West provoked a flurry of international control and management techniques under the rubric of biomedicine to limit its spread across the imperial world. The recommendation for segregation and isolation of leprosy-affected people, as proposed by Hansen and his followers during the First International Leprosy Conference in 1897, in Berlin, led to the establishment of numerous leprosaria in the early 20th century. Thus, several significant leprosy settlements in Asia were built under the colonial legislation of three major empires in the early 20th century: the British Empire, the United States, and the Japanese Empire. While many missionary-run clinics and shelters were established to contribute to the medical care of leprosy-affected people in Asia, colonial powers enforced a mandated set of standards for their collective management and control. In partnership with colonial expansion, these policies of segregation and isolation, originally for hygienic and medical purposes by medical elites, served to benefit the combined economic and nationalist aims of colonialists (Macleod & Lewis, 1988), and promoted homogenized, self-sustained settlements to meet the medical and social needs of the sufferers. Due to the disfiguring of the sufferers and the fear of the disease, the leprosy policies indirectly reinforced social stigmatization against leprosy-affected people. Even after leprosy was found curable in the 1960s, leprosy-affected people chose to remain in settlements to avoid confrontation and social rejection. As a result, most leprosaria functioned as living places for hundreds of stigmatized people and their families into the postcolonial period. Due to their continued isolation from mainstream society, leprosy affected people and their history have been unheard, marginalized, and largely forgotten.

Since the 1990s, research on leprosy and leprosy-affected people has encompassed many different disciplines such as history, anthropology, medicine, sociology, and psychology, drawing upon perspectives from Eurocentric colonial / imperial criticism of civilized citizens (Anderson, 1998; Edmond, 2006), imperial hygiene (Bashford, 2004), evangelical and racial criticism (Gussow,

1989; Shankar, 2014), as well as modern medical developments and public health policies (Moran, 2007). When the Leprosy Prevention Law in Japan was finally abolished in 1996, the history of leprosy, leprosy settlements, and leprosy-affected people in Asia again received the spotlight. In contrast with prolific discourses from the metropole, the center of leprosy research has now shifted to site-specific periphery diversity through a bottom-up process, focusing on the unique development pattern of each leprosarium. Particularly, a series of transnational movements to promote heritage preservation of the history of leprosy has reconnected historical legacies of leprosy through international collaboration among NGOs, activists, preservationists, academics, and mostly, leprosy-affected people. Leprosaria, as products and symbols of imperial colonialism, have become central to the discussion of colonial leprosy policies and their impacts on social and cultural domains from the perspectives of the periphery/colony in modern times.

Given that leprosy has been stigmatized and demonized in many distinct layers, leprosy was never a conventional social topic. Places like leprosy settlements were never a priority in historic preservation due to their lesser architectural value and subordinate historical importance in nation-building activities. Furthermore, they are considered as difficult heritage, which reflects “the destructive and cruel side of history” (Logan & Reeves, 2008) and is awkward for public reconciliation with a positive, self-affirming contemporary identity (Macdonald, 2009).

Conference Themes

In this call for papers, we invite contributors from heritage studies, museum studies, medical history, sociology, contemporary archeology, preservation advocacy, etc. to investigate the complexity for heritage preservation and interpretation of colonial leprosaria and related sites in Asia, which were involved with human rights, social stigma, and post-colonial reconciliation. Although the main focus of this conference is leprosaria in Asia, we also welcome papers on colonial settlements, including comparable spaces such as asylums and health facilities associated with quarantine regimes. Conference themes to be explored include, but are not limited to:

Topic one: A Difficult Past as Resilient Resource for the Cohesive Present

  • How have different forces in contemporary events led to revisiting forgotten history for the purposes of building community and national coherence, such as museum interpretation, civil involvements, anti-stigma strategies? What were the political, economic and social contexts to support these current methods?
  • How have collective memories of leprosy-affected people observed the growing solidarity amongst themselves against threats to the integrity of their living spaces, while reinterpreting those same living spaces in conjunction with their local histories?
  • How did the uniqueness of each leprosarium contribute to the agenda of the heritage legacy? In what form and representation?

Topic two: A Difficult Past as Cultural Resource for the Contested Future

  • How did the recent unique way of reappraising heritage value of individual leprosarium challenge the collective identity of leprosaria on an international level under the influence of a possible World Heritage nomination?
  • How did the involvement of diverse stakeholders such as NGOs, leprosy-affected people, and activists affect interpretations of the difficult past while also being used for its cultural and social significances in a contest for cultural diplomacy?
  • How did the complexity of leprosy legacy challenge the existing preservation discussion under the influence of Euro-centric academic discourse on heritage studies?

Submission of Abstracts

The conveners (John DiMoia, Department of Korean History, College of Humanities, Seoul

National University, South Korea; Shu-yi Wang, College of Humanities and Social Sciences, National Tsing-hua University, Taiwan) welcome abstracts of no more than 300 words, which should be submitted to sy.wang@mx.nthu.edu.tw by July 31, 2018.


Key Dates:

July 31: Deadline for abstract submission

August 15: Notification of accepted abstracts

November 30: Deadline for submission of final paper (5,000 words)

Funding / resources: The conveners are currently awaiting the results of funding applications. We expect to be able to provide meals and housing in Seoul, and possibly some part of travel costs. Further information will be provided as it becomes available.

Contact Email: sy.wang@mx.nthu.edu.tw