Embracing Digital History: How Medicine Became Modern

Brandy L. Schillace What was it like to be sick 50 years ago? 150 years ago? What medical innovations most changed American lives? How did Cleveland rise to importance as a medical city? In other words: How did we get here? The Dittrick Medical History Center and Museum, in collaboration with design partners and funded by the National Endowment for the Humanities, presents: How Medicine Became Modern, an innovative new way to explore the artifacts, people, and stories behind the great innovations of our age! Museums nationally and internationally are reaching new audiences—while retaining and engaging present ones—through the medium of digital technology. The Philadelphia Museum...

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One Lump or Two? Phrenology Diagnosed by the Bump

Diagnosing by the Bump Franz-Joseph Gall (1758-1828), proposed that different functions, such as memory, language, emotion, and ability, were situated in specific “organs” of the brain. These portions of the brain would grow or shrink with use, and the changes would appear as bumps or depressions on the skull. Called Phrenology, the practice of “reading” the bumps supposedly allowed a practitioner to assess different abilities and personality traits. It's a curious idea: what might our own phrenological assessment look like? Phrenology and the American Dream Sometimes, we see what we want to see... Americans were very receptive to phrenology when it arrived...

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