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Look Inside Patients, Power and the Poor in Eighteenth-Century Bristol

Patients, Power and the Poor in Eighteenth-Century Bristol


Part of Cambridge Studies in the History of Medicine

  • Date Published: July 2002
  • availability: Available
  • format: Paperback
  • isbn: 9780521526937

£ 44.99

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About the Authors
  • In early modern England, housewives, clergymen, bloodletters, herb women, and patients told authoritative tales about the body. By the end of the eighteenth century, however, medicine had begun to drown out these voices. This book uses patients' perspectives to argue that changes in the relationship between rich and poor underlay this rise in medicine's authority. In a detailed examination of health, healing, and poor relief in eighteenth-century Bristol, the author shows how the experiences of the hospitalized urban poor laid the foundations for modern doctor-patient encounters. Within the hospital, charity patients were denied the power to interpret their own illnesses, as control of the institution shifted from lay patrons to surgeons. Outside the hospital, reforms of popular culture stigmatized ordinary people's ideas about their own bodies. Popular medicine became working-class medicine, associated with superstition and political unrest.

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    Product details

    • Date Published: July 2002
    • format: Paperback
    • isbn: 9780521526937
    • length: 284 pages
    • dimensions: 229 x 153 x 17 mm
    • weight: 0.559kg
    • availability: Available
  • Table of Contents

    List of tables, figures, and maps
    1. Introduction
    2. Everyone their own physician
    3. The marketplace of medicine
    4. charity universal?
    5. The client
    6. The abdication of the governors
    7. Surgeons and the medicalization of the hospital
    8. The patient's perspective
    9. The reform of popular medicine
    10. Conclusions

  • Author

    Mary E. Fissell

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