12. March 2012 16:09

ESF Research Networking Programme DRUGS - Call for papers

Is This the End? The Eclipse of the Therapeutic Revolution October 4- 6, 2012, University of Zurich, Switzerland

The Institute and Museum of the History of Medicine, University of Zurich, Switzerland will host an international conference of the European Science Foundation’s research network “DRUGS”. The conference will be held from 4-6 October 2012 in Zurich in conjunction with the Competence Centre for the History of Knowledge (ETH Zurich and University of Zurich).

Confirmed Speakers:
Wenzel Geissler, London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine/ University of Oslo
Jeremy Greene, History of Science, Harvard University
Julie Livingston, History, Rutgers University
Scott Podolsky, Global Health and Social Medicine, Harvard Medical School
Viviane Quirk, History of Medicine, Oxford Brookes University

ʺDRUGSʺ is a Research Networking Programme of the European Science Foundation. It analyses processes of standardization in the development, regulation, marketing and use of modern pharmaceuticals. The main research focus is on the five decades between 1930 and 1980. One of the central research hypotheses of the program is a historiographic argument about the so-­called
“therapeutic revolution”. This development may be characterised by the following conjuncture: a dynamic and innovative pharmaceutical industry; a demanding and receptive environment in medicine, public health and society; and third party social security payment systems. The invention and dissemination of important classes of drugs, such as beta-­‐‑blockers, modern psychoactive drugs or antibiotics, fall into this period of economic growth, and so does the related emergence of
important medical concepts such as the risk factor. While a substantial amount of research has addressed single drug trajectories and the conditions and
traditions from which the therapeutic revolution emerged, less is known about the end of the so-­called “Golden Age”. The conference will pursue broader methodological and historiographical questions about the aftermath of the therapeutic revolution in the timespan from 1970 to the present, its implications for medical and public health practice, its inherent contradictions and predicaments,
as well as its end(s). We especially welcome research addressing the repercussions of the demise of the “Golden Age” on concepts of health, illness and disease, as well as treatment practices; the (re)introduction of politics of difference in  pharmaceutical research through patient activism; the social and cultural productivity of drugs; clinical trials in a global situation, the ethics of research as
well as questions of biological citizenship; microbial and political resistances.

For more details please click <media 39484>here</media>.