Public lecture: The history of burns and their treatment: An integrated story (1800 - 2000)

20 July 2017
Royal College of Physicians of London
11 St Andrews Place, Regents Park, London, NW1 4LE

Public lecture: The history of burns and their treatment: An integrated story (1800 - 2000)

This lecture stems from a 4-year Arts and Humanities Research Council (AHRC) project, jointly based at the universities of Birmingham and Leeds, which explores the history of burns and British identity over the years 1800 to 2000.

6pm           Arrival and refreshments
6.30pm      Lecture starts
7.30pm      Lecture finishes

The lecture will examine the way in which burns medicine emerged in the first half of this period and consider the ways in which burns injuries were understood, evolving from localised wounds to the skin caused by heat to a trauma which potentially wreaked havoc on all of the body’s systems. Successful treatment was thereby gradually seen to require an integrated approach to attend both the numerous physical repercussions as well as the mental impact of burns.

While addressing the medical therapies employed by practitioners and fully-integrated burns teams post-Second World War, the lecture will also foreground the integrated approach incorporated into the project, examining burns medicine in the context of the changing urban environment, professionalisation of medical and fire services, as well as the material culture of burns over the 19th century and the first decades of the 20th century.

Professor Jonathan Reinarz

Jonathan Reinarz is professor of the history of medicine at the University of Birmingham and director of the social studies in medicine team and secretary of the European Association for the History of Medicine and Health.

He has published extensively on the history of hospitals and medical education and is principal investigator on the AHRC project Forged by fire: burns injury and identity in Britain, c.1800–2000. His publications include Healthcare in Birmingham (2009), Medicine and the Workhouse (with Leonard Schwarz, 2013), A Medical History of Skin (with Kevin Siena, 2013) and Complaints, Controversies and Grievances in Medicine (with Rebecca Wynter, 2015).