5.6 The history of medicine: a Scottish perspective
This course looks at how historians seek to understand past diseases and epidemics. These had social, political and medical implications as they inevitably damaged the economic resources of a community. An example based in the Edinburgh Royal Infirmary is used to illustrate how changes in medical delivery affected the local population.
In addition there is a description of the work of the eminent Scot William Cullen, professor of medicine at Edinburgh University (1752), who described the body as a complex and highly integrated mechanism composed of solid organs, nervous system and fluids.
To access this material click on the course link below. It leads to a separate OpenLearn course and will open in a new window.
(10 study hours)
By the end of this free course you should be able to:
describe the Scottish contributions to the history of medical thinking and practice in the 19th century;
give examples of the many medical advances influenced by wider social, economic, political and cultural contexts;
understand how developments in medical education permitted women to qualify and practise as doctors.