May 2009

Well, I’m pleased to tell you all that my defense went well, and that this is my first blog post as a doctor!  

I gave a presentation with copious just-scanned-that-morning medical institute advertisements, and took a few questions.  Various Minneapolis friends came to the public part of the defense, and my dad and his wife flew in for it.  Then I was sequestered with my committee, who asked me various tough and not so tough questions, and we had an interesting conversation about my work.  ( One of my committee members was on speakerphone, and there were no technical problems.)  I was sent out of the room while the committee deliberated, and spent the time staring at a mysterious photo display in the hallway of the physics building and reciting psalms to myself.  Then my advisor came out and shook my hand, everyone congratulated me and gave me some revisions to do, and I was suddenly Dr. Fischer.  A party ensued, and there was much celebration, including pickled carrots, lots of my favorite people, small children, discussions of Minnesota politics and SQL jokes.  The lilacs were blooming and Minneapolis was as lovable as ever.

I do want to clarify that I am a doctor of the history of science and technology, not of public history.  I’m a public historian because of passion, not training!



 “Suzanne Fischer will defend her dissertation, “Diseases of Men: Sexual Health and Medical Expertise in Advertising Medical Institutes, 1900-1930,” on Monday, May 18, in Physics 236A, beginning at 1:00 pm.

All members of the History of Science, Technology, and Medicine Program [and everyone else] are invited to attend her opening presentation (about 20 to 30 minutes, including questions), and then the examining will convene in private for the examination.”