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- DescriptionIn the first comprehensive study of nineteenth-century medical museums, Morbid Curiosities traces the afterlives of diseased body parts. It asks how they came to be in museums, what happened to them there, and who used them. This book is concerned with the macabre work of pathologists as they dismembered corpses and preserved them: transforming bodies into material culture. The fragmented body parts followed complex paths - harvested from hospital wards, given to one of many prestigious institutions, or dispersed at auction. Human remains acquired new meanings as they were exchanged and were then reintegrated into museums as physical maps of disease. On shelves curators juxtaposed organic remains with paintings, photographs, and models, and rendered them legible with extensive catalogues that were intended to standardize the museum experience. And yet visitors refused to be policed, responding equally with wonder and disgust. Morbid Curiosities is a history of the material culture of medical kwledge in the age of museums.
- Author BiographySamuel J.M.M. Alberti is Director of Museums and Archives at the Royal College of Surgeons of England; previously he held a joint position at the University of Manchester, where he was a researcher at the Manchester Museum and a lecturer at the Centre for Museology. He is author of Nature and Culture: Objects, Disciplines and the Manchester Museum and editor of The Afterlives of Animals: A Museum Menagerie.
- Author(s)Samuel J. M. M. Alberti
- PublisherOxford University Press
- Date of Publication07/04/2011
- SubjectRegional History
- Place of PublicationOxford
- Country of PublicationUnited Kingdom
- ImprintOxford University Press
- Content Note30 black and white illustrations
- Weight480 g
- Width148 mm
- Height222 mm
- Spine20 mm
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