If you’d like to read my dissertation, here it is.

Please cite as:

Suzanne Fischer, “Diseases of Men:  Sexual Health and Medical Expertise in Advertising Medical Institutes, 1900-1930,” PhD diss., University of Minnesota, 2009.

Creative Commons License
Diseases of Men: Sexual Health and Medical Expertise in Advertising Medical Institutes, 1900-1930 by Suzanne M Fischer is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 3.0 United States License.

Over the last few months, the museum blogosphere has been talking about conferences.  Are conferences broken?  Yes.  (Particularly in environmental terms.)  Do we still need f2f conferences? Yes! Folks have been discussing other models, like virtual conferences, conferences as discrete points in ongoing conversations, Maker Faire (or skillshares in general?)  and camp.

I’m happy to say that I’m going to camp,  THATcamp, this weekend at CHNM.  There will be a bit of a mw2009 reunion there, it looks like (a conference that is not broken), and many of my favorite digital historians will be there, including many internet friends whom I’ve met and many I’ve yet to meet.  I expect that this will be an extremely well-tweeted conference, and also watch the THATcamp blog for ideas both already presented and emerging.

I see my role at THATcamp as mostly jumping up and down to say “What about museums?  What about material culture?”  That was basically my proposal:  “I’d like to talk about how to make museum collections, particularly three dimensional artifacts of material culture, part of ongoing digital humanities work. What are the challenges involved in 3D imaging, providing access, building ways for visitors and scholars to interact and engage with non-scanner-ready historical collections?”  Luckily, it looks like other campers are thinking about these issues too!  I’ll keep you posted on our discussions.

As this weekend many of my friends will be heading down to our alma mater for reunion, I thought it would be a good time to look over some web resources on Oberlin history.  This year is the college and town’s 175th birthday, and as the first college in the country to graduate women and African-Americans, as well as a center of social justice politics, Oberlin has had an important place in American history.

The college has a 175th portal with a few timelines:  the college timeline stops at 1850, so it’s not super useful at the moment.  The college president timeline is pretty nice, with a readable but not flashy interface.  An alumni-led effort, the Oberlin LGBT Community History Project, is a great online oral history repository.  The college library has a fascinating (well, I think it’s fascinating) article on library cataloguing at the college (note the brief mention of Cutter!) as well as digitized college and town publications.  The college archives have a huge wealth of resources on college and community history, a contentdm database of archives objects, and a bibliography of material on Oberlin history.  The Oberlin Historical and Improvement Organization also collects local history and the Electronic Oberlin Group has web exhibits.  Happy 175th and happy reunion!

The Oberlin College Archives are looking for a new archivist. If you are awesome, as all my readers are, and have a history degree plus an MLS (and maybe a CA), you should apply. Oberlin’s Mudd Library is one of my favorite places in the universe, and you would be able to work on the fourth floor there! managing terrific collections on American history! Living in a charming small town quite near a big city! Also in the near future you would get to help me research my book on Grahamites in the Midwest! I can’t stress enough how wonderful this would be for the right person. Go forth and apply.

Come by the U of M’s history of science colloquium this week for a talk by Evelynn Hammonds on the underrepresentation of women of color in science/technology/engineering/medicine.  She may discuss U of M’s own gender-equity class action suit, the Rajender case (a woman chemist, repeatedly passed over for tenure-track jobs, sued for gender discrimination in hiring in 1977.  The case became a class action suit under which over 300 people sued the university, particularly from the departments in the Institute of Technology).  (I regret that I won’t be able to make the talk, due to travel to an undisclosed location.)

Friday, November 30
Room 131, Tate Lab of Physics
3:35 p.m. (refreshments at 3:15 in Room 216)

Evelynn Hammonds
Holyoke Center
Harvard University

“The Marginalization of Experience”

ABSTRACT: This talk addresses the problem of the underrepresentation of women of color in STEM fields from a historical perspective.

For further information about the Colloquium, please contact Barbara Eastwold at (612) 624-7069 or For updates and changes check the web at

Good news! Not only was it just my birthday yesterday, but I have also now officially revised two chapters this month. For International Dissertation Writing Month (modeled on Nanowrimo), I pledged to revise three chapters, so I’m right on track. Here, FYI, is a tag cloud from Chapter Four, the one on Salvarsan and selling scientific medicine. I’m extremely pleased that “quack” doesn’t show up there at all.

administer administration advertising american around blood business chicago city code cure disease doctors dr drug ehrlich expertise health injection institute intravenous iv laboratories magic medical medicine methods microscope patient physicians popular practice practitioners regular reinhardts remedy salvarsan scientific selling skill specialists syphilis techniques technologies therapeutic therapy treatment used wassermann york

created at

Minnesota ghost towns, and towns that fear that fate. From the thinktank Minnesota 2020. Related event: ghost town tour up in Grant County, October 6.

Electrifying Minnesota Exhibit explores sustainable energy & encourages visitors to conserve energy.

The Bakken Museum unveils its newest exhibit, Electrifying Minnesota, this Saturday, September 29, 2007. The exhibit recounts the history of electricity in Minnesota since one of the nation’s first hydroelectric plants whirred into action 125 years ago at St. Anthony Falls. It shows how everyday life has been shaped by electrification through artifacts, photos, first-hand accounts, early advertisements and film from the 1880s to the 1950s. Electrifying Minnesota prompts visitors to imagine life without a computer, cell phone or microwave and demonstrates how not so long ago, appliances we take for granted today were often considered luxuries. It features hands-on activities that demonstrate electromagnetic induction, how the process utilizes natural resources and how the use of those resources impacts the environment. Visitors will learn about sustainable energy and how to take responsibility for their electrical future by joining The Bakken Team and taking the Minnesota Energy Challenge.

A survey for Minnesotans on the preservation of electronic records, from the state Office of Enterprise Technology.

The Hamline-Midway History Corps (in St Paul) is getting serious. Go to their organizational meeting on Oct 14 or one of their interesting programs.

Now open:  the Right on Lake Street exhibit at the Minnesota Historical Society, produced with students from Macalester and artists from In the Heart of the Beast.  I’ve lived within a few blocks of Lake St my whole time in Minneapolis, and I’ll review this exhibit here in a few weeks. To tide you over, there’s some neat web content, including a Flash ride on the 21A bus, something I never thought would be reproduced on the web.  (I live around the Cedar section.)

And now, for one academic link!

Meagan links to an article on the cost of the academic job search for one (probably average) scholar. It costs much more time and money than you’d think (unless you’ve been on the market already).

GRAND TOTAL= $5,126.81*

(*after reimbursement for airline tickets for campus interviews, total = $4,774.81**)

(**Annual stipend for TA at my institution = $12,000; range of advertised salaries: from an assistant professor at a Midwestern state college with a 4/4 teaching load, $38,000, to a non-tenure-track director of a writing center at a community college in California, with a one-course/year teaching load, $67,000)

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