On the Borderland of Medical and Disability History: A Survey of the Fields
Abstract

Summary:

This essay explores the multiple sites where disability appears in the history of medicine and suggests ways in which medical historians can self-consciously incorporate a disability perspective into their own work. Just as medical historians have much to learn from disability historians, disability historians could benefit from looking more closely at the history of medicine. While disability cannot (and should not) be reduced to disease, the fact remains that some forms of disability are brought about by disease processes, and some require daily regimes of home health care, therapy, and pain management. How the disabled have interacted with health care institutions, caretakers, and the medical establishment is too significant to be written out of its history.