Inaugural Lecture: Being Human – The Contemporary Relevance of Medical Heritage

Inaugural Lecture: Prof. dr Manon S. Parry, Special Professorship in Medical

Medical can play a major role in society by contributing to health and wellbeing. There are over 240 museums displaying medical in Europe, and more than 37 million visitors have attended anatomical exhibitions such as Gunther von Hagens’ Body Worlds. Clearly there is great public interest in medical history and heritage – although there is also much disagreement about what should be shown, who should see it, and what audiences might gain from such encounters with the past.

This presentation will demonstrate the importance of medical heritage for understanding history, but also in addressing contemporary public health problems, from the stigma of illness or to issues of and reproduction. Innovative uses of sounds, objects, images, and exhibitions will be examined to show how classrooms as well as cultural venues are now used to introduce diverse groups to the material culture of the history of medicine, to promote health, as well as learning.

Aula, Main Building, VU University, De Boelelaan, Amsterdam