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Preview: Journal of the History of Medicine and Allied Sciences - Advance Access

Journal of the History of Medicine and Allied Sciences Advance Access

Published: Sat, 17 Mar 2018 00:00:00 GMT

Last Build Date: Sat, 17 Mar 2018 03:45:35 GMT


“Invalid Cookery, Nursing and Domestic Medicine in Ireland, c. 1900”

Sat, 17 Mar 2018 00:00:00 GMT

This article uses a 1903 text by the Irish cookery instructress Kathleen Ferguson to examine the intersections between food, medicine and domestic work. Sick Room Cookery, and numerous texts like it, drew on traditions of domestic medicine and Anglo-Irish gastronomy while also seeking to establish female expertise informed by modern science and medicine. Placing the text in its broader cultural context, the article examines how it fit into the tradition of domestic medicine and the emerging profession of domestic science. Giving equal weight to the history of food and of medicine, and seeing each as shaped by historical context, help us to see the practice of feeding the sick in a different way.

Unpalatable Truths: Food and Drink as Medicine in Colonial British India.

Tue, 13 Mar 2018 00:00:00 GMT

This article considers the significance of eating and drinking within a series of diaries and journals produced in British colonial India during the Indian Rebellion of 1857. The discussion of food and drink in this context was not simply a means to add color or compelling detail to these accounts, but was instead a vital ingredient of the authors’ understanding of health and medical treatment. These texts suggest a broader colonial medical understanding of the importance of regulating diet to maintain physical health. Concern with food, and the lack thereof, was understandably a key element in diaries, and in the eyewitness accounts kept by British soldiers, doctors, and civilians during the rebellion. At a narrative level, mention of food also functioned as a trope serving to increase dramatic tension and to capture an imagery of fortitude. In references to drink, by contrast, these sources reveal a conflict between professional and lay opinions regarding the use of alcohol as part of medical treatment. The accounts show the persistent use of alcohol both for medicinal and restorative purposes, despite growing social and medical anxieties over its ill-effects on the body. Close examination of these references to food and drink reflect the quotidian habits, social composition, and the extent of professional and lay knowledge of health and medicine in colonial British India.