Graduate Conference on the History of the Body

Graduate Conference on the History of the Body
October 20th- October 22nd, 2011
Washington University in St. Louis, Danforth Campus

The Graduate History Association at Washington University in St. Louis is
pleased to announce the inaugural Graduate Conference on the History of
the Body, to be held October 20-22 on the Danforth Campus in St. Louis.

In 2001, Roy Porter remarked that body history had become the
“historiographical dish of the day.” Ten years on, histories of the body
continue to flourish. Often working at the interstices of a number of
methods and approaches, the field has produced innovative and compelling
articulations of the body as a category of historical analysis. As
thinking about bodies has occasioned ongoing encounters, clashes, and
border-crossings between a variety of disciplines, this conference aims to
promote conversations across scholarly divides by showcasing and
reflecting on graduate-level scholarship on the history of the body, in
all periods and regions, and from a variety of methodological approaches.
The keynote address will open the conference at 4:00 on Thursday, October
20, and panels will be delivered on Friday, October 21 and Saturday,
October 22. Please see the attached program for full details.

Professor Mary Fissell, renowned historian of medicine at the Johns
Hopkins University, will deliver the Keynote Address in conjunction with
the Washington University in St. Louis Department of History Colloquium
Series: “Blood Will Out: Kinship, The Body, and Popular Medicine,
1750-1860,” at 4 pm in Busch Hall Room 100 on the Danforth Campus. Please
join us for an open reception immediately following in Busch 18.

There are no registration fees for this conference, but pre-registration
is available through our website:


One month (less a day) until the drawing for a free room at the HSS/SHOT/4S Annual Meetings in November!


History of Science Society, Graduate and Early Career Caucus Raffle!  Win a free hotel room from Thursday, Nov. 3rd – Sunday, Nov. 6th, 2011 at the Renaissance Cleveland Hotel!

Worried about the expense of HSS?  Well, this year GECC is raffling off a room at the conference hotel for the duration of the conference (Nov. 3-6)!  With a purchase of a $5 raffle ticket (or buy five for $20!) you will be entered to win this valuable prize.  We’ll have the drawing on October 20th, two weeks before the annual meeting, giving you ample time to cancel any existing reservations without penalty.  Proceeds will fund future GECC events including a Friday night mixer for graduate and early career professionals this year.

Once you have purchased one of the two ticket options below, you will receive emails confirming your purchase from both Paypal and Ticketbud.  The Ticketbud email will include a copy of your ticket and ticket number.  Since Ticketbud works with lots of different events, the ticket includes a scannable bar code for entrance into our “event.”  Of course, you can disregard this feature since you’ll have already been entered into the drawing.

Go to Ticketbud to purchase your raffle tickets.

If you are interested in buying a raffle ticket but would rather pay with cash or check, please contact Nathan Crowe ( to set up arrangements.

Volunteer and Receive a Complimentary Registration to Attend the History of Science Society Annual Meeting.

Graduate students are invited to volunteer at the HSS conference for 4.5 hours in exchange for their registration fee.  There are a number of jobs for which we need assistance to ensure that the conference runs smoothly.

  • Registration Desk: volunteers will be needed from 3pm Thursday to noon Sunday to welcome attendees, check them in, give them their registration materials, conduct on-site registration as needed, answer questions, and be the first line of assistance for any issues that may arise. While there will always be an HSS staff member on hand, this job requires volunteers to be helpful, polite, and presentable.
  • Data Entry: In conjunction with our Registration Table we may need one volunteer per shift to help process on-site registration information. This will consist largely of entering registration data into our database and working simple credit card processing equipment and software. A facility with numbers is desirable. This assignment is associated with the Registration Desk; so all requirements of deportment and appearance apply.
  • Collective Book Exhibit: 1 volunteer per shift will be needed to staff the HSS table in the exhibition hall. This table will contain book titles from publishers who could not send a representative. As with the Registration Desk, these volunteers will need to be helpful, polite, and presentable.

Volunteers local to the Cleveland area are encouraged to think about volunteering for shifts either early or late in the conference. Since many out-of-town volunteers arrive only during the middle of the conference, the outlying shifts are harder to fill.

We would also like to spread local volunteers among the many shifts, so that someone with local knowledge will be on hand to answer questions about the community. Please let us know when applying if you can be helpful in this regard.

Regardless of the job you are assigned we hope that all volunteers will be flexible during their shift as needs arise and the contingency of events will require everyone to be adaptable.

Early volunteers will get first pick of shifts and jobs, but we ask everyone to be flexible so that everyone can be accommodated.

Although volunteering for 4.5 hours will earn graduate students their registration, you will still be responsible for paying for dinners, hotel, transportation, and all incidentals.

Remember that The History of Science Society’s Annual Meeting will be co-located with the meetings of the Society for the History of Technology (SHOT) and the Society for Social Studies of Science (4S). Registration for the HSS, SHOT, or 4S conference entitles the registrant to attend any of the regular sessions for all three meetings.

If you are interested, please contact Manuela Fernández in the HSS office at for more information.

Finally, publishers who attend the exhibit typically look for students to staff their tables during lunches, author interviews, breaks, etc. The publishers pay and/or provide books for such service. If you are interested in doing this, please let me know.

For more information on the History of Science Society go to