“The Inquisitors’ Laboratory: Madness, the Insanity Defense and the New World’s First Mental Hospital”
Christina Ramos is an Assistant Professor of History at Washington University. She specializes in the history of medicine in the early modern world, with a focus on colonial Latin America.
She is particularly interested in the complex intermingling of medical, religious, and indigenous cultures; the history of colonial hospitals and the provisioning of public health; the Inquisition as an archive for medical history; and the daily experience and treatment of sickness and disease.
Her first book project, Bedlam in the New World: Madness, Colonialism, and a Mexican Madhouse, 1567-1821, is a history of madness in colonial Mexico. Specifically, this work examines the history of the Hospital de San Hipólito in Mexico City, the first hospital of the Americas to specialize in the care and confinement of the mentally disturbed, and its growing alignment with the Inquisition and the secular criminal courts from which it often received patients.
She teaches courses on the history of medicine and colonial Latin America.
The 72nd Historia Medica Lecture is hosted by the Bernard Becker Medical Library in collaboration with the Center for History of Medicine.
Free and open to the public. Refreshments served.
Center for History of Medicine lectures
For inquiries contact Debra Deiermann.