Manon Parry

Dr. Manon Parry is an academic researcher and exhibition curator. She is Professor of Medical History at the Vrije Universiteit, Amsterdam, and Senior Lecturer in American Studies and Public History at the University of Amsterdam.

Her interests include the medical and health humanities, bioart and design, disability studies, museums and monuments, and digital public history. She has developed exhibitions on a wide range of topics, including global health and human rights, disability in the American Civil War, and medicinal and recreational drug use, with project budgets ranging from $14,500 to $3 million. Her traveling exhibitions have visited more than 300 venues across Argentina, Canada, Germany, Guam, Turkey, the United Kingdom and the United States, and several remain on tour through 2021.

From 2016-2020, Dr. Parry is working on a project titled “Human Curiosities: Expanding the Social Relevance of Medical Museums.” While the collections of medical museums, including human remains, are sometimes labeled as “curiosities,” her title refers instead to the idea that it is entirely human to be curious about bodies and that curators can harness that interest in socially-useful ways. She will study museums across Europe, focusing specifically on the representation of sexuality and reproduction, mental health issues, infectious diseases, and race, disability, and the life cycle. Output will include a book, an exhibition and an online tool experimenting with new strategies for interpreting medical heritage. The research is funded by a €315,000 Veni grant from the Netherlands Organisation for Scientific Research (NWO) and Heritage Collecitons/The University of Amsterdam.

She is co-editor, with Ellen S. More and Elizabeth Fee, of Women Physicians and the Culture of Medicine (Johns Hopkins University Press, 2008) winner of the Archivists and Librarians in the Health Sciences Publication Award for Best Print Publication in 2012, and author of Broadcasting Birth Control: Mass Media and Family Planning (Rutgers University Press, 2013). She serves as a Managing Editor of the UK journal Museum & Society and was previously an International Consulting Editor for the US journal The Public Historian. See CV for further details.