Monday, January 23, 2012

Laennec in the classroom

Here's a belated update to my series of posts about rare books I've been bringing for the History of Medicine I class in the School of Medicine. Two weeks ago, Dr. Alan Hunter gave a lively le
cture on René-Théophile-Hyacinthe Laennec and the invention of the stethoscope. We are lucky to have several titles by Laennec in our collection, and for this class I chose an American edition of Laennec's study of the medical value of listening to the sounds of the body:

Laennec, R. T. H. A Treatise on the Diseases of the Chest and on Mediate Auscultation. New York: S. Wood & Sons, and Collins & Hannay, 1830.

The students are always glad when I bring something printed in English, but this title didn't capture their imaginations as much as, say, our Vesalius. Next time, I'm hoping that a few of our 19th century stethoscopes will bring some more excitement into the mix.

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