mardi 17 septembre 2019

Sexualité, savoirs et pouvoirs

Sexualité, savoirs et pouvoirs

Gabriel Girard, Isabelle Perreault, Nicolas Sallée (dir.)

Presses de l'Université de Montréal
Collection « UniverSanté »
224 pages • septembre 2019

En inscrivant l'étude des savoirs dans celle, plus générale, des institutions qui les produisent et les diffusent, ce livre se penche sur la façon dont la sexualité est « mise en discours ». Ces institutions sont universitaires, quand les savoirs ont la prétention d'être scientifiques ; elles sont pédagogiques, quand elles forment les jeunes à atteindre la maturité sexuelle ; elles sont médicales, quand elles visent à guérir ou à prévenir les maladies ; elles sont enfin judiciaires, quand elles régulent les comportements, punissent les délinquants ou assurent la protection des individus.

Illustrant la complexité des rapports entre société et sexualité, ainsi que la vitalité de la pensée critique contemporaine dans ce domaine, inspirée notamment par le travail de Michel Foucault, les auteurs appréhendent la sexualité comme un enjeu de savoir et donc, de pouvoir. Ce faisant, ils mettent en lumière son caractère insaisissable en tant que champ d'expérience échappant à toute réduction à une nature ou à une essence qu'il s'agirait de révéler. Les chercheurs et les étudiants en sociologie, en criminologie, ainsi que ceux provenant de la santé publique, trouveront ici matière à réflexion, en plus de tous ceux interpellés par le sujet.

Gabriel Girard est agent de planification et de recherche à la Direction de santé publique de Montréal, professeur-adjoint de clinique à l'École de santé publique de l'Université de Montréal (ESPUM) et membre du Centre de recherche de Montréal sur les inégalités sociales, les discriminations et les pratiques alternatives de citoyenneté (CREMIS).

Isabelle Perreault est professeure agrégée au Département de criminologie de l'Université d'Ottawa et titulaire de l'axe de recherche Enjeux biopolitiques et groupes minorisés du Centre interdisciplinaire de recherche sur la citoyenneté et les minorités (CIRCEM).

Nicolas Sallée est professeur agrégé au Département de sociologie de l'Université de Montréal et directeur scientifique du CREMIS.

Le bien et le mal en pharmacie

Beyond the Medicines/Drugs Dichotomy: Historical Perspectives on Good and Evil in Pharmacy 

Call for papers

University of Johannesburg
5-7 December 2019

The dichotomy between pharmacologically-active substances considered legitimate (and therefore worthy of regulation as medicines, and also provided as public goods) and those considered problematic (and therefore deserving of moral and legal opprobrium, prohibition and sanction) has informed global regulatory regimes for decades. (Andy Gray, 2017)

Drug policies and ways of thinking and talking about substances and treatment approaches are changing fast, both at national and international levels. These changes reflect a growing acknowledgement of core contradictions within the legislative regimes Gray described above, crafted respectively for ‘drugs’ and ‘medicines’ from the nineteenth-century onwards. Subversions of this dichotomy have lately become more apparent in the public eye – for example, in widespread addiction to opioid painkillers; in the repurposing of pharmaceuticals for pleasure, sedation or sociability; in the scientific legitimation of previously restricted drug alkaloids for medical application. Increasing criticism of ‘war-on-drugs’ style governance, the liberalisation of cannabis laws, and the advocacy of harm reduction approaches to drug treatment are among the indications of shifting views even within governments themselves.

The organizers of this event argue that precise historical understandings of how this dichotomy has worked in practice, in multiple and very different contexts, are necessary in order to map possible alternatives and futures. To clearly identify who established and maintained classificatory boundaries, what interests lay behind their actions, how they have been challenged, and why it is only now that faith in them seems to be waning are important tasks for historians of health, medicines and modernities, and those working in related fields and disciplines.

This event at the University of Johannesburg aims to draw together those addressing the questions below in their research. We invite submissions from postgraduates, together with emerging and established scholars, and are keen to include studies from around the world, as well as those that look at international or transnational contexts.

Guiding questions:
  • What knowledge was generated to justify distinctions between medicines/drugs? By whom? How were decisions made about what evidence could be considered authoritative?
  • Which groups and/or disciplines were involved in establishing or challenging the emergence of this dichotomy and what determined their success or failure?
  • How have histories of various substances been created and deployed in justifying or disputing this dichotomy?
  • What values have driven pharmaceutical technologies and their regulation? How have ideas about 'good' and 'evil' framed scientific and political discussions?
  • How long has a shift towards a neuro-chemical society been happening and with what effects? Has it necessarily been a dehumanising process?
  • Have chronologies of commodification, lawmaking and enforcement followed similar routes in different countries or contexts?
  • How do historians recover neuro-chemical biographies, and what do these reveal about individual or collective experiences of the medicines/drugs dichotomy in practice?

The event is funded by the Wellcome Trust and is jointly organised by the Department of History at the University of Johannesburg and The Centre for the Social History of Health and Healthcare (CSHHH) Glasgow through the 'Changing Minds: Psychoactive Substances in African and Asian History' project.

The event will take place from 5 to 7 December 2019 at the University of Johannesburg.

Call for Papers
Please submit a title, an abstract of no more than 200 words which addresses some of the above questions, along with a narrative biography of 200 words, to Caroline Marley ( and Thembisa Waetjen ( by 20 September 2019.

Applicants will be informed of the committee’s decision by 4 October 2019.

This event is made possible by the generous support of the Wellcome Trust. Some funding for travel and accommodation is available, and will be prioritised for graduate students, post-doctoral fellows and early career researchers, particularly where they are located at institutions in the Global South.

lundi 16 septembre 2019

La grande peste castillanne de 1596

Life in a Time of Pestilence. The Great Castilian Plague of 1596–1601

Ruth MacKay

Cambridge University Press
September 2019
format: Hardback
isbn: 9781108498203

From the Middle Ages onwards, deadly epidemics swept through portions of Spain repeatedly, but the Castilian Plague at the end of the sixteenth century was especially terrible. In late 1596, a ship carrying the plague docked in Santander, and over the next five years the disease killed some 500,000 people in Castile, around 10 percent of the population. Plague is traditionally understood to have triggered chaos and madness. By contrast, Ruth Mackay focuses on the sites of everyday life, exploring how beliefs, practices, laws, and relationships endured even under the onslaught of disease. She takes an original and holistic approach to understanding the impact of plague, and explores how the epidemic was understood and managed by everyday people. Offering a fresh perspective on the social, political, and economic history of Spain, this original and engaging book demonstrates how, even in the midst of chaos, life carried on.

La santé publique dans l'architecture moderne

Public Health in the Early Modern City: Salutogenesis through Architecture

Call for Papers

10-13 June 2020 - Edinburgh, Scotland

Submission deadline: 20 September 2019

In 1979, medical sociologist Aaron Antonovsky coined the term "salutogenesis” to refer to factors that promote physical and mental health and, in so doing, offered a new lens to consider the study of health beyond the mere consideration of death and disease (pathogenesis). Though rarely remarked upon in such terms in architectural history, in fact the practices of architecture, city planning, and landscape design have been employed over time and across diverse geographies toward salutogenic, or health-enhancing, purposes. For example, essential resources like water have been manipulated and distributed through infrastructure across and beyond urban areas to sustain basic health, and gardens, hospitals, and other therapeutic spaces have arisen within cities to aid healing and health-promoting practices.

Following the 16th century, architecture and urbanism went through significant changes during what is known today as the Early Modern era. This era witnessed major reforms in political, economic, and cultural institutions across the world from Europe to East Asia. Contemporaneous with these shifts, city planning and design were leveraged to improve public health in cities through a host of new public resources and construction projects, including urban infrastructure (e.g., bathhouses, irrigation system, roads), medical facilities, therapeutic landscapes, and places for gathering and entertainment. These ideas illustrate Gesler’s (2003) four categories of healthy environments—built, symbolic, natural, and social—and convey how architectural history owes some debt to public health. Further, these urban interventions were justified by theories of health, healing, and benevolent medical practice. Thus, alongside novel built forms and ideas about the architectural qualities and resources essential to healing and health, a new constellation of legitimizing discourses emerged among those in power. Public health, then, offers a critical lens through which to view the function, use, and social significance of institutions and spatial practices within early modern cities—and of architecture itself.

This session seeks to situate the development of early modern cities within these broader trends by exploring the profound and complex ways that architecture and landscape design were conceived of and employed as instruments of health promotion in the development of urban infrastructure, institutions, and spaces in Western and Eastern societies in the 16th – 18th centuries. Submitted papers could explain how notions of public health or medical practice at a given moment in time influenced the design of either regular or explicitly therapeutic buildings and spaces in a urban context; how scientific and cultural contexts of health and cross-cultural exchanges impacted the design of healthy cities; how the integration of landscapes and other salutogenic urban projects were inspired or justified by visions for a healthy and productive society; and the role of non-architects in the design of health-promoting places. Authors may focus on a single structure, a specialized typology, interventions in a particular city or region, or any other topic relevant to the architectural implications of public health. Especially welcome are submissions that deploy new methodological, interdisciplinary, and/or comparative approaches to the analysis of salutogenic spaces.

Please submit your abstracts to the panel organizers: Dr. Mohammad Gharipour, Morgan State University ( and Dr. Caitlin DeClercq, Columbia University ( The deadline is 20 September 2019, and proposals should be submitted to the Session Chairs, whose details may be found above. All proposals should include the following information: A proposal, in English, of no more than 300 words; The title of the paper, or discussion position; Your name; Your professional affiliation; A short curriculum vitae (maximum of two pages); A mailing address, email address and telephone number. For more details on submissions, please refer to the EAHN website.

dimanche 15 septembre 2019

Médecine municipale

Civic Medicine: Physician, Polity, and Pen in Early Modern Europe 

J. Andrew Mendelsohn, Annemarie Kinzelbach, Ruth Schilling (Editors)

Series: The History of Medicine in Context
Hardcover: 332 pages
Publisher: Routledge; 1 edition (August 12, 2019)
Language: English
ISBN-13: 978-1472453587

Communities great and small across Europe for eight centuries have contracted with doctors. Physicians provided citizen care, helped govern, and often led in public life. Civic Medicine stakes out this timely subject by focusing on its golden age, when cities rivaled territorial states in local and global Europe and when civic doctors were central to the rise of shared, organized written information about the human and natural world. This opens the prospect of a long history of knowledge and action shaped more by community and responsibility than market or state, exchange or power.

L’incertitude dans le domaine des médicaments et des drogues

Gouverner l’incertitude dans le domaine des médicaments et des drogues. Les récits de risque, de progrès et de déclin

Colloque international

Strasbourg, France
October, 1-2, 2019

Conference organisation :

Nils Kessel (Université de Strasbourg),

Joseph Gabriel (Florida State University),

David Herzberg (University at Buffalo),

Medicines have played a pivotal role throughout the 19th and 20th centuries as both instruments of therapeutic progress and dangerous threats to the health of individuals and populations. A linguistic and rhetorical binary accompanies and facilitates these two modes of action. On the one hand, we often think of pharmaceuticals through progressive narratives framed around stories of medical success and power, one in which risks are considered either the result of regrettable yet often understandable failure to adhere to a treatment regime or as a characteristic imbued within the chemical structure of the drug itself. At the same time, we often think of illicit drugs through declension narratives in which these substances pose a threat to the individual and the nation. The dangers of illicit drugs tend to be framed through the lens of either moral failure or external threat while, simultaneously, articulating risk through overlapping discourses of addiction, violence, and moral and physical decay. Pharmaceuticals and illicit drugs, then, somehow seem to be two distinct types of things, even if they are the same physical object..

However, historical scholarship of the last 30 years has deepened our understanding of our complicated relationship with chemical molecules. The attention given to the porous boundary between illicit drugs and legal medicines; studies on adverse drug events and how they result from complex health systems; the relationship between regulation and the constitution of black and gray markets: these and other interventions have allowed us to move beyond a simplistic reading of heroic devotion to science or moral failure of scientists, physicians, industries, or consumers/patients. They have allowed us to complicate our understanding of the nature of pharmaceutical (drug) risk, who is responsible for it, and how to manage it.

The upcoming conference in Strasbourg seeks to draw on existing literatures about drugs, risk and harm, and governance in order to bring together scholars who share an interest in pharmaceuticals and illicit drugs as objects of scholarly inquiry but who operate in different rhetorical, conceptual, and scholarly domains. We propose to use the concept of “uncertainty” to re-connect scholarly domains that have been structured and separated, in part, according to the historically constructed categories of heroic science and moral failure—to put into intellectual practice the reconfiguration of knowledge implied by the last 30 years of historical scholarship. For example: what might a historian of public health who writes on the tobacco industry have to say to a scholar of the criminal justice system who works on the history of crack cocaine? What might a scholar who studies pharmaceutical pricing have to say to a scholar who studies the black market? How does uncertainty become manifest in those different situations? How does risk as both a way of assessing and governing danger (cf Soraya Boudia) change management of uncertainty throughout the 20th century, in both formal and informal settings (markets and others)? What are the various types of uncertainties associated with drugs and pharmaceuticals, how have they changed over time, and does thinking about one type of uncertainty meaningful implications for other forms of uncertainty? Is the risk of overdosing from impure heroin in the 1950s, for example, similar to the risk of having an allergic reaction to penicillin? Do the dangers posed to the scientific enterprise by pharmaceutical industry corruption say anything about the dangers posed to deliberative political processes by corrupt political regimes? Is the danger of not being able to afford insulin similar to the uncertainty of not developing a useful new product due to an overly burdensome regulatory regime? In other words, what does it mean to use the notion of uncertainty as an analytic framework across boundaries of licit and illicit, market and health, biological and political? We believe that such an approach can generate new ways to think about the many problems and questions associated with the development, manufacture, distribution, and consumption of drugs and pharmaceuticals.

Uncertainty is also useful in one additional way: as a means to analyze futures through aesthetic narrations of promise and peril. How do imagined drug futures depict uncertainty in relation to risk and progress? Are there connections between narrated (or imaged) configurations of uncertainty and pragmatic regulatory regimes? Are aesthetic narrations of uncertainty just a means to an end—a veil to cover the pursuit of profit—and thus only to be taken seriously by the naïve? If so, why and how do they still work (if they do)? Or is it wrong to equate the aesthetic life of uncertainty with drug marketing and the profit imperative? What happens when we see drug aesthetics as multivalent, emerging from multiple locales and carrying more than one agenda?

Tuesday, October, 1, 2019

10 am
Welcome address and opening remarks
Nils Kessel (Université de Strasbourg)

10.30 am
Session 1: Risk and efficacy in medicines and drugs

Effectiveness and efficacy in drugs
Jean-Paul Gaudillière (CERMES3, INSERM, Paris)

Commentator: Joseph Gabriel (Florida State University, Tallahassee)

11.30 am

Narratives of risk and decline: health education and illegal drugs in Britain, 1980s-1990s
Alex Mold (London School for Tropical Medicine and Hygiene)

Commentator: Jeremy Greene (Johns Hopkins University, Baltimore)

12.30 pm


2 pm
Session 2: Neither savior nor scourge: Alternative narrations of pharmaceutical effects

Risk/uncertainty/progress in harm reduction

Samuel K. Roberts (Columbia University, NY)

Commentator: Nils Kessel

3 pm

Negotiating uncertainty and progress in corporate pharmaceutical audiovisual promotion, 1950s-1990s
Christian Bonah (Univ. de Strasbourg)

Commentator: Bettina Wahrig

4 pm

Coffee break

4.30 pm
Session 3: Risk in unexpected places / unexpected roles of risk

When Risk is Delicious: Pharma, Strategy, and the Opportunity inside High-Risk Drugs

Mark Robinson (Harvard University)

Commentator: Elizabeth Watkins (UCLA, San Francisco)

5.30 pm
Epidural anesthesia and oxytocyne : generalising medical progress (titre à confirmer)
Sezin Topcu (CNRS/CEMS, Paris)

Commentator: Jeremy Greene

6.30 pm Free time

8 pm Dinner

Wednesday, October, 2, 2019

9 am
Session 4.1: Uncertainty, effectiveness, and the boundaries of medicine

From side effect to ADR
Nils Kessel (Université de Strasbourg)

Commentator: Elizabeth Watkins

10 am Coffee break

10.30 am
Session 4.2: Uncertainty, effectiveness, and the boundaries of medicine

The Medicalisation of Female Sexual Desire
Jacob Stegenga (University of Cambridge)

Commentator: Hélène Michel (Université de Strasbourg)

11.30 am

Illegal risk in the GDR : visual representations of drug addiction (titre à confirmer)
Anja Laukötter (MPI für Bildungsforschung, Berlin)

Commentator: Jesse Olszynko-Gryn (University of Glasgow)

12.30 pm Lunch

2 pm
Session 5: The risks of risk: Narrations of drug effects

Narrative Risk: Aesthetics, Drugs, and the (American?) Historical Imagination

Joseph Gabriel (Florida State University)

Commentator: Christian Bonah

3 pm
Precarious Hopes – Stable Fears – or Vice Versa? Drug Narratives in the Age of the Pharmakon
Bettina Wahrig (Universität Braunschweig)

Commentator: David Herzberg (SUNY at Buffalo)

4 pm
General Discussion, book preparation, closing remarks
Joseph Gabriel, David Herzberg

5 pm The End

samedi 14 septembre 2019

Représenter la peau noire

Amateurs en sciences

Amateurs en sciences (France 1850-1950) : une histoire par en bas

Appel à communications 

Journée d’étude du programme AmateurS 
Elle se tiendra à l’université du Mans le 14 janvier 2020.

Les propositions d’une quinzaine de lignes accompagnées d’un court CV sont à envoyer à Hervé Guillemain ( avant le 25 octobre 2019.

L’ANR AmateurS propose de produire une histoire non surplombante des amateurs en science, privilégiant une perspective « par en bas » qui ne soit pas subordonnée aux jugements que les savants professionnels portent sur eux ni aux hiérarchies que solidifient les institutions scientifiques. S’il ne s’agit pas de nier que la catégorie amateur se soit largement constituée dans la confrontation aux savants professionnels et ait souvent été le fruit de mécanismes d’exclusion qui ont désigné d’en haut ceux qui étaient les « amateurs », le projet propose de placer les amateurs au centre des investigations, de restituer leurs points de vue sur la science qu’ils font et sur leurs identités de savants et d’étudier leur science « en train de se faire » à partir, notamment, des traces matérielles qu’elle a laissées. —

Intitulé Une histoire subjective des mondes des amateurs, l’axe 2 de ce projet de recherche est centré sur la question des identités des amateurs. La journée du 14 janvier sera particulièrement dédiée à la définition et redéfinition des identités et des frontières et centrée sur les situations de partage entre amateurs et professionnels dans les sciences des années 1850 aux années 1950. Nous souhaitons à l’occasion de cette journée mettre l’accent sur les moments de débat qui réorganisent les acteurs de part et d’autre des frontières académiques. Seront privilégiés les nœuds chronologiques et thématiques autour desquels se déploient des controverses théoriques et/ou des conflits de légitimité ayant pour conséquence des mouvements d’exclusion ou d’inclusion. 

La journée s’organisera notamment autour des trois pistes de réflexion suivantes :
  • La redéfinition des identités des acteurs, amateurs et professionnels, dans le sillage des transformations juridiques et réglementaires qui affectent l’organisation des différentes disciplines.
  • La manière dont l’émergence de nouveaux objets d’étude, celle de nouvelles disciplines et le développement de controverses scientifiques redessinent les frontières entre amateurs et professionnels.
  • Le rôle des moments de commémoration et des rituels collectifs dans la structuration des identités amateurs.