Wednesday, September 30, 2009

First Amendment Day 2009

The University of North Carolina is sponsoring a number of events campus-wide on Thursday, October 1, 2009 to celebrate First Amendment Day. The Center for Media Law and Policy has prepared a web page listing all the activities that are planned, and describes the day as follows:
This campus-wide, day-long event is designed to both celebrate the First Amendment and explore its role in the lives of Carolina students. Students and others will read from banned books, sing banned music and discuss the importance of each of the rights protected by the First Amendment, the need to be tolerant when others exercise their rights and the public university's special role as a marketplace of ideas.
In 2004, Congress mandated that September 17 be designated Constitution Day and Citizenship Day to commemorate the anniversary of the US Constitution and that all publically funded educational institutions offer programming on the history of the Constitution. At UNC, the Law School offered a lecture on the Supreme Court case Korematsu v. United States, which involved the forced internment of Japanese citizens in relocation camps during World War II.

Monday, September 28, 2009

Banned Books Week 2009

Banned Books Week: Celebrating the Freedom to Read is observed during the last week of September each year, and for 2009 it runs from September 26 to October 3. Established in 1982, this annual American Library Association (ALA) event urges citizens not to take the fundamental democratic freedom of reading for granted.

First Amendment rights protect the unhindered access to information that is essential to a free society. Banned Books Week celebrates freedom of expression, for both authors and readers, and serves as a reminder that attempts at bans, restrictions, and censorship of books are ongoing. According to the American Library Association, over 500 books were challenged in 2008 alone; for further information, visit the ALA website.

Scientific, medical & health-related books are of course no exception to controversy and have also been challenged over the years, including such notable works as Galileo's Dialogue Concerning the Two Chief World Systems, Ptolemaic and Copernican (1632), Darwin's On the Origin of Species by Means of Natural Selection . . . (1859), Margaret Sanger's Family Limitation (1914), and more recent titles such as Our Bodies, Ourselves (1971) by the Boston Women's Health Book Collective.

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Papermaker Named MacArthur Fellow

The 2009 MacArthur Fellows were just announced, and the world of books scored another victory with the awarding of one of the twenty-four unrestricted $500,000 awards to Timothy Barrett of the University of Iowa. Tim is a master papermaker in both Eastern and Western traditions, as well as a researcher, historian, and advocate for the art and science of the book.

The founding director of the hand-papermaking facilities at Iowa, Tim also served from 1996-2002 as director of the Center for the Book at Iowa, where he is currently Research Scientist and Adjunct Professor. His Japanese Papermaking: Traditions, Tools, and Techniques is a classic text, and Tim has trained countless students over the years in hand papermaking. Tim also teaches periodically in the Rare Book School at the University of Virginia, where 2005 MacArthur Fellow, Terry Belanger, recently retired as founding director.

Among Tim's many notable projects is the Charters of Freedom Re-encasement Project, in which he and collaborators produced archival paper to rehouse the Declaration of Independence, the Bill of Rights, and the Constitution.

As a former student of Tim's (and Dr. Belanger's), I congratulate him on his lifelong advocacy and contributions to the culture of the book!

New Exhibit at UNC Health Sciences Library

Learned in Science, Explored in Art: An Exhibit of Paintings by Wolfgang Ritschel

September 21 to December 31, 2009
UNC Health Sciences Library

Gallery Talk & Reception: Wed., October 14, 2009, 5-6:30pm

In this collection of 35 paintings, Wolfgang Ritschel explores the world of medicine through the media of visual art. Although Ritschel had formal training in painting at a young age, he went on to pursue a successful career in pharmacology and medicine before returning to art full time. Ritschel is emeritus professor at the University of Cincinnati. The paintings are displayed on the 1st and 2nd floors of the Library.

For more information about the artist and his work, please visit the exhibit webpage. An exhibition catalog is also available online [PDF].

The travelling exhibit was organized by the University of Cincinnati Libraries.

Monday, September 21, 2009

Every Patient Tells a Story

The UNC Health Sciences Library and the Department of Social Medicine will be hosting Lisa Sanders, MD for a reading on October 7, 2009 from her new book Every Patient Tells a Story: Medical Mysteries and the Art of Diagnosis. Sanders is the NY Times Magazine "Diagnosis" columnist and technical adviser to the television show House, MD. The reading will be held from from noon-1pm in Room 2204 of the Medical Biomolecular Research Building (MBRB) on the UNC campus.

In addition to the reading, a series of small groups will meet to discuss the book during September and October in the library. These discussions will be facilitated by faculty in the Schools of Medicine and Nursing, and registration is required. Visit HSL's web site to sign up.

Calling All Collectors: Good Books, Great Advice

On Sunday, September 27, 2009, Dr. Libby Chenault of the Rare Book Collection of the Wilson Special Collections Library, will be hosting a program entitled, "Calling All Collectors: Good Books, Great Advice." The event will be at 2pm in the Rare Book Collection Reading Room, and is free and open to the public.

Does the thought of McGuffey Readers bring back memories that make you want to hold one again? Do you appreciate old comic books, or 21st-century graphic novels, or beautiful book bindings? Need advice about what to do with a family library you’ve inherited? If you answered “Yes” to any of these questions, then you may already be a book collector, or may wish to think about becoming one.

On Sunday, September 27, at 2 p.m., in the Wilson Special Collections Library, a free, public program, “Calling All Collectors: Good Books, Great Advice,” will explore book collecting and provide information and resources for novice and prospective collectors. Dr. Libby Chenault, interim Curator of Rare Books, will cover the topics of condition; age; caring for books; determination of value; and strategies for starting and building a collection. Examples from the Library’s collections will be on display to demonstrate condition, era, printing type, illustrations, and format.

Chenault will talk about how paper ages, how to determine whether a first edition is valuable, and even how to spot fake author signatures. There are other things to watch out for in collecting, too. “Many people can’t imagine that if a 20th-century book is missing a dust jacket, then its price may be halved,” said Chenault. Chenault points out that books can offer happier surprises, too. Sometimes they are multi-format, including features such as fore-edged paintings, the scenes painted on edges of a book’s pages and visible only when the pages are fanned–and not when the book is closed.

At the end of the program, participants will have an opportunity to discuss items brought from home (limit of one or two per person, please) with Rare Book Collection staff. The Library does not provide appraisals but can assist with advice and referrals.

Experienced collectors who wish to join with other bibliophiles are also invited to the Rare Book Collection’s advanced collecting group. Contact Dr. Chenault at (919) 962-1143 or

Thursday, September 17, 2009

Hugh Morton Collection Now Online

The Photographic Archives of the North Carolina Collection in Wilson Library has recently mounted a new digital collection, the Hugh Morton Collection of Photographs and Films. At present approximately 1500 images are available online, which represents only a small fraction of the many tens of thousands in the Morton collection at UNC. A View to Hugh is an award-winning blog that has documented the processing of this collection, and the posting announcing the digital collection also solicits input from users as the project develops further. As described on the project web site:

The Hugh Morton Collection of Photographs and Films (Collection P081, North Carolina Collection Photographic Archives, Wilson Library) documents Hugh MacRae Morton's career covering eight decades (1930s-2000s) as a prominent North Carolina businessman, political figure, tourism booster, conservationist, environmental activist, sports fan, and prolific image-maker. The still images and motion pictures in the collection cover aspects of Morton's various involvements: as a photojournalist; a soldier in the Pacific Theater during World War II; the owner and operator of the Grandfather Mountain tourist attraction in Linville, N.C.; a well-known figure in state government and friend of many North Carolina politicians, entertainers, and media personalities; an alumni, booster, and frequent sports-event attendee of the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill; and an ardent admirer of nature and lover of travel.
The Morton digital collection is searchable by keyword and browseable by name, location, subject, and decade. Morton's lens ranged over a wide range of subjects, and although the digital collection will be greatly increasing in size as additional images are processed, there are already images in the following health-related categories under Browse by Subject:
-- Health care facilities
-- Hospitals
-- Medical aspects of war
-- Medical equipment and supplies
-- Nurses
-- Nursing homes
A finding aid to the Morton collection is also available online.

The image above is from the Morton Collection (#P081). Entitled "WW2 Medic Helps Injured Man," it was taken during Morton's WWII service with the 161st Signal Photography Corps in the Pacific Islands.

Information on other digital collections at UNC Libraries and the Health Sciences Library is available in the Digital Collections section of the HSL Special Collections web site.

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Bullitt Club Lecture on Dr. Frances Sage Bradley

The Bullitt History of Medicine Club will be meeting Tuesday, September 29, 2009 at the UNC Health Sciences Library in the 5th Floor Conference Room (527). Please join us from 12 to 1pm for light refreshments and lecture. Meetings are free and open to the public.

Dr. Barbara Clowse, historian and author, will be speaking on "Dr. Frances Sage Bradley: Her Biographer's Dilemma."

Dr. Bradley [1862-1949] was a social activist and reformer who graduated from Cornell Medical School in 1899. For the next decades she advocated simple, cheap means to save infants and their mothers from death and increase odds that school age children would become healthy, productive adults. Writing the life story of this feisty, formidable woman presents challenges for even an experienced biographer.

Dr. Clowse received her education at Duke (AB) and UNC-Chapel Hill (MA, PhD), and was a professor at several institutions, including NC A&T, NC School of the Arts, UNC-Chapel Hill, Salem College, Guilford College, and UNC-Greensboro. She is the author of the following books: Ralph McGill: A Biography; Women, Decision Making, and the Future; Brainpower for the Cold War: The Sputnik Crisis and National Defense Education Act of 1958; and A Social Gospel For the 21st Century.

For further information about the Bullitt Club, please visit the organization's web site.

Monday, September 14, 2009

Brushes With Life: Art, Artists and Mental Illness

The UNC Department of Psychiatry and the UNC Schizophrenia Treatment & Evaluation Program will host the 2009 fall opening of “Brushes With Life: Art, Artists and Mental Illness,” from 5:30 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. Tuesday, Sept. 15, on the third floor of the N.C. Neurosciences Hospital at 101 Manning Drive on the UNC-Chapel Hill campus. For additional information, contact Tana Hartmann at (919) 843-7971 or

Brushes With Life: Art, Artists and Mental Illness is an award-winning patient art gallery located on the third floor of the NC Neurosciences Hospital in the halls approaching the psychotic disorders inpatient unit. The psychotic disorders inpatient unit is a part of the UNC Schizophrenia Treatment and Evaluation Program (STEP), which provides inpatient and outpatient care for patients dealing with psychotic symptoms or illnesses such as schizophrenia and schizoaffective disorder. The gallery features the artwork of former STEP inpatients, current STEP clinic and the new Community Mental Health clinic outpatients, as well as clients from Club Nova, a local (Carrboro) clubhouse for the mentally ill.

The Schizophrenia Treatment and Evaluation Program is a specialty clinical program in the Department of Psychiatry in the UNC School of Medicine. It consists of a specialized inpatient unit in the Neurosciences Hospital, an outpatient clinic, and the Brushes with Life art gallery.

Media contact: Tom Hughes, (919) 966-6047, This post is from the UNC School of Medicine web site.

Thursday, September 10, 2009

Healthcare Reform Panel at UNC School of Medicine

Interested in understanding the current healthcare reform debate? If so, you do not want to miss Healthcare Reform 101 on Monday, September 14, 2009 from 5pm - 6pm in 321 MacNider.

Dr. Jonathan Oberlander will provide an introductory framework for understanding the current debate on healthcare reform. He will be joined by Dr. Tim Carey, Dr. Warren Newton, and other UNC School of Medicine experts and the panel will answer your questions on healthcare reform.

We hope that you will be able to join us for this special event.

Ali Chhotani and Anshu Verma
Whitehead Medical Society Co-Presidents

Please contact Katie O'Brien, Internal Communications, UNC School of Medicine (919-843-3989; with any questions. The event is open to the campus community.

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

UNC Adventures in Ideas Seminar "On Illness"

The UNC Program in the Humanities and Human Values has announced its Adventures in Ideas seminars for Fall 2009, which includes:

On Illness: Medicine, Media, Society, and the Experience of Health
The Vanderwoude Family Seminar
3pm - 9pm, Friday, October 23, 2009

The humanities deal with those issues that define the human condition, and health and illness are central in defining our lives. But how do we decide if we are sick or well? Is illness culturally and socially defined? What role does the media play in helping people make decisions about our health.

This seminar will start with a specific issue--back pain--as a human predicament, a profound social problem, a medical issue, and a vexing public policy challenge. Mexico and other countries will serve as illustrations to explore how people explain, experience, and give meaning to their bodies and their pains in diverse ways. We’ll learn how medical reporters evaluate the newsworthiness of developments in the fields of medicine and psychology and learn how people can use information gleaned from medical reporting to their advantage.

Topics and Speakers

:: Backbone: Personal, Social and Policy Consequences of Low Back Pain
Nortin Hadler, Professor of Medicine

:: The Meaning and Experience of Illness from a Cross Cultural Perspective
Kaja Finkler, Emerita Professor of Anthropology

:: What Makes Medical News
Tom Linden, M.D., Glaxo Wellcome Distinguished Professor of Medical Journalism and Director, Medical & Science Journalism Program

:: What is Illness and What is Health?
A panel discussion with our speakers

Time and Cost
3:00 p.m. – 9:00 p.m., Friday, October 23, 2009. The tuition is $125 ($110 by September 4). Tuition for teachers is $62.50 ($55 by September 4). 10 contact hours for 1 unit of renewal credit. The optional dinner is $20.00. Online Registration.

This seminar is scheduled to be held at the Center for School Leadership Development. All participants registered for the seminar will be mailed background packets with directions, maps, agenda, background readings, etc.

Click for information on other Adventures in Ideas seminars for Fall 2009.

Theater Piece on Mental Illness at UNC Memorial Hall

Carolina Performing Arts will be hosting Low, a theater piece by Rha Goddess on the mental health system, on Friday, October 2, 2009 at 8pm at UNC's Memorial Hall.
What is insanity? This bitingly articulate and emotionally riveting multidisciplinary solo theater piece fuses poetry, music and prose to explore the mythology, stigma, fear and confusion surrounding mental illness. Furious, funny, dark and hopeful, Low is an unflinching portrayal of a vibrant young woman's all-too-common journey through the mental health system. A pioneer performance/recording artist, writer, poet and social activist, Rha Goddess is known for her unique blend of soulful melody, spoken word consciousness and hip-hop energy.

Tickets for this performance and all others for the 2009-2010 season are available at the Carolina Performing Arts web site.

Student tickets are $10.00. Note that some performances for 2009-10 are already selling quickly and have limited availability (e.g., Sonny Rollins, Ravi Shankar, Béla Fleck, Soledad Barrio and Noche Flamenca, The Blind Boys of Alabama, the London Philharmonic Orchestra).

Bullitt Club & Trent Society Speakers for 2009-10

The Bullitt History of Medicine Club sponsors a collaborative series of monthly evening meetings with the Trent History of Medicine Society (alternating between UNC and Duke), as well as a series of noon meetings (at UNC). Both evening and noon schedules are provided below. All meetings are free and open to the public.

All UNC events will be held in the Fifth Floor Conference Room (#527), UNC Health Sciences Library. All Duke events will be held in the History of Medicine Reading Room (#102), Duke Medical Center Library.

For more information and directions, see the Bullitt Club web site. Bullitt lectures are also available as mp3s on the web site and via iTunes. Please note that the schedule is subject to change; check the web site for up-to-date information on Bullitt events.

Bullitt / Trent Evening Lectures

:: Dr. Philip Klemmer, Professor of Medicine, UNC School of Medicine
Jack London's Mysterious Malady
[UNC] September 15, 2009 — Tuesday, 5:30pm

:: Dr. Gordon Klintworth, Wadsworth Research Professor, Ophthalmology, Duke University
The Lady in America’s Most Famous Painting
[Duke] October 13, 2009 — Tuesday, 5:30pm

:: Dr. Michael McVaugh, Professor Emeritus of History, UNC
Arabic into Latin (Or, Why Medical Schools Got Started)
[UNC] November 10, 2009 — Tuesday, 5:30pm

:: Dr. Edward C. Halperin, Dean, School of Medicine, University of Louisville
Historical Problems Posed by the 100th Anniversary of Flexner’s Report on Medical Education
[Duke] December 8, 2009 — Tuesday, 5:30pm

:: Dr. Keith Wailoo, Professor of History, Rutgers University
Title to be announced.
[UNC] January 19, 2010 — Tuesday, 5:30pm

:: Dr. H. Michael Jones, Professor of Pathology & Laboratory Medicine, UNC School of Medicine
Poverty, Pellagra, and the Tale of a Tar Heel
[Duke] February 9, 2010 — Tuesday, 5:30pm

:: Dr. Margaret Humphreys, Josiah Charles Trent Professor in the History of Medicine, Duke University
The South's Secret Weapons: Disease, Environment and the Civil War
[UNC] March 30, 2010 — Tuesday, 5:30pm

:: Dr. William Bradford, Professor of Pathology, Duke University
Pathology at Duke As I Remember It
[Duke] April 13, 2010 — Tuesday, 5:30pm

Bullitt Noontime Lectures

:: Dr. Barbara Clowse, Historian and Author
Dr. Frances Sage Bradley: Her Biographer's Dilemmas
[UNC] September 29, 2009 — Tuesday, 12-1pm

:: Dr. Janna Dieckmann, Associate Professor of Nursing, UNC School of Nursing
Home-Visiting by Nurses, Physicians, and Physical Therapists in North Carolina, 1950-1965
[UNC] October 19, 2009 — Monday , 12-1pm

:: Chris Dibble, MD/PhD student, UNC School of Medicine; Winner of 2009 McLendon-Thomas Award in the History of Medicine
The Dead Ringer: Medicine, Poe, and the Fear of Premature Burial
[UNC] December 10, 2009 — Thursday, 12-1pm

:: Dr. Alexander Toledo, Assistant Professor of Surgery, UNC School of Medicine
Title to be announced.
[UNC] February 18, 2010 — Thursday, 12-1pm

:: Dr. Carol Otey, Associate Professor of Cell and Molecular Biology, UNC School of Medicine
Oral Contraception: From Ancient Plant Extracts to the Birth of the Pill
[UNC] April 22, 2010 — Thursday, 12-1pm

Wednesday, September 2, 2009

Congressman Price to Speak on Health Care Reform

US Representative David Price (D-NC) will be speaking on health care reform legislation at 7pm on September 2, 2009. The event will held in the Pleasants Family Assembly Room in Wilson Library.

Tuesday, September 1, 2009

Bullitt Club Lecture on Jack London

The first joint meeting of 2009-10 for UNC's Bullitt History of Medicine Club and Duke's Trent History of Medicine Society will be Tuesday, September 15, 2009 at the UNC Health Sciences Library in the 5th Floor Conference Room (527). Please join us at 5:30pm for light refreshments followed by the lecture at 6pm. Meetings are free and open to the public.

Dr. Philip Klemmer, Professor of Medicine at UNC, will be presenting a lecture entitled, "Jack London's Mysterious Malady." The lecture will present an analysis of the possible cause of Jack London's death from uremia at age 40 based on his own writing and life events on the cruise of the Snark in the South Pacific.

Dr. Klemmer received his education at Gettysburg College (BA) and Temple University Medical School (MD). After residencies at UNC and an early stint on the faculty, Dr. Klemmer served 18 years in private practice before rejoining the UNC faculty, where he has been Professor of Medicine since 1988.

For further information about the Bullitt Club, please visit the organization's web site.