Medicine at the Margins: Conference 15th April 2011

Medicine at the margins: ideas, knowledge and practice from c. 1500 to 2000

University of Glamorgan
Friday, April 15th 2011

A conference jointly organised by the
History Division
and the
Research Centre for Literature, Arts and Science (RCLAS),
and supported by a grant from the
Wellcome Trust

Plenary Speaker:

Dr Lauren Kassell
(Pembroke College Cambridge)

Throughout the history of medicine there have always been knowledges and practices considered to be (or portrayed as) outside the normal or orthodox: these include early modern popular and magical healing, mesmerism, ‘quack’ remedies, and alternative or complementary medicine. They have all existed at the boundaries of acceptability and legitimacy, and these boundaries have frequently shifted. Similarly, some illnesses have placed patients beyond the margins of acceptability. Mental health problems, sexually-transmitted diseases and conditions incurring great disfigurement have all been intertwined with social concepts of the taboo. This conference explores these margins, their form, context and history.

Conference Links:

Call for Papers (Deadline: 30th January 2011)

Conference Programme

Conference Poster


Conference Report

About the Conference: Listen to a podcast with Fiona Reid and Alun Withey

Contacts: Lois Thomas (, Dr Alun Withey, History ( and Professor Andrew Smith, RCLAS (

Image (top left) reproduced by the kind permission of the Gillies Archives