Health, Mind and Body (HIST*4200) | College of Arts

Health, Mind and Body (HIST*4200)

Code and section: HIST*4200*01

Term: Winter 2017

Instructor: Tara Abraham


Course Format: 2 x 1.5-hour seminars per week

Course Synopsis:

This course examines the historical dimensions of scientific and medical efforts to
understand the relations between mind, brain, and body, from the late nineteenth century
to the present. Focusing on the American context, we will examine the institutional
dimensions of attempts to both understand and treat individuals suffering from mental
illness and neurological disorders. In relation to this, we will also explore attempts to make
sense of the brain and its function as a locus of behaviour, affect, and mental state. We will
approach our subject from the perspective of several historical actors, including scientists,
clinicians, patients, and critics. Wherever possible, we will pay attention to the effects of
social and cultural context on how individual minds and brains been constructed, explained,
and treated.

Methods of Evaluation and Weights:

Seminar Presentations (2 x 10% each) 20%
Research Proposal and Annotated Bibliography 10%
Research Presentation 10%
Peer Review 5%
Research Essay 35%
Seminar Participation 20%

Required Readings:

A set of online readings available through Ares.


*Please note: This is a preliminary web course description only. The department reserves the right to change
without notice any information in this description. The final, binding course outline will be distributed in the
first class of the semester.