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Drawing Blood: Technology and Disease Identity in Twentieth-Century America
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Drawing Blood: Technology and Disease Identity in Twentieth-Century America

4.07  ·  Rating Details  ·  14 Ratings  ·  4 Reviews
In Drawing Blood, medical historian Keith Wailoo uses the story of blood diseases to explain how physicians in this century wielded medical technology to define disease, carve out medical specialties, and shape political agendas. As Wailoo's account makes clear, the seemingly straightforward process of identifying disease is invariably influenced by personal, professional, ...more
Paperback, (The Henry E. Sigerist Series in the History of Medicine), 304 pages
Published February 12th 1999 by Johns Hopkins University Press (first published March 31st 1997)
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Mike Hankins
Jan 28, 2015 Mike Hankins rated it liked it
Shelves: hist-of-sci-tech
Wailoo uses examples of several blood diseases to talk about how the diagnoses of disease is culturally driven, as is the creation of diagnostic tools to discover and track disease and the way doctors interpret those tools. This is an important idea -- for many of us, we think of medical knowledge as being a completely objective, perfected body of knowledge, that doctors evaluate us and diagnose conditions and perscribe things accordingly. Wailoo shows that this is not entirely the case. Even th ...more
saizine
Oct 13, 2015 saizine rated it liked it
Rating is probably closer to a 3.5/3.75 than a true three. A good, albeit sometimes a little roundabout, history of the development of hematology as a discipline, of technology as defining and re-defining the medical profession, of the moral and social characteristics that were felt to be embodied in blood, and the construction and deconstruction of disease. I found the chapters ‘“Chlorosis” Remembered: Disease and the Moral Management of American Women”, 'Blood Work: The Scientific Management o ...more
Allyson Dyar
May 09, 2015 Allyson Dyar rated it really liked it
Drawing Blood: Technology and Disease Identity in Twentieth-Century America is the first of two books written by Dr Wailoo (the second being The Troubled Dream of Genetic Medicine: Ethnicity and Innovation in Tay-Sachs, Cystic Fibrosis, and Sickle Cell Disease, which I’ll review at a later time when I do a re-read) that I’ve read.

For whatever reason, I remember reading the introduction and suddenly realizing that historian Dr Wailoo is black. Not that this affected my perception of him as an aut
...more
Michael Burnam-fink
Apr 14, 2013 Michael Burnam-fink rated it it was amazing
It's not often that I can describe an academic book as 'sexy', but that's practically the only word for Drawing Blood. Wailoo does an incredibly job looking at a century of blood work in terms of technology, diagnosis, and disciplinary authority. A fascinating and critical book in the history of medicine.
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