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November 6, 1987

Medicine in the New World: New Spain, New France, and New England

Author Affiliations

Northwestern University Medical School Chicago

Northwestern University Medical School Chicago

JAMA. 1987;258(17):2438. doi:10.1001/jama.1987.03400170124039

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The 27th International Congress of the History of Medicine held in Barcelona, Spain, in 1980 provided an opportunity to examine the effects of medicine in the old world on medicine in the new world. The four authors originally presented summaries of their work; in this volume they have greatly expanded these into full-fledged essays.

In his introduction, Numbers contrasts the environmentalist approaches of Daniel Boorstin and Bernard Bailyn, who held that the primitive conditions in America brought about a completely new way of thinking and doing, with the opposing views of Michael Kammen and Richard Harrison Shryock, who saw and demonstrated much closer relationships between the old and the new worlds. This book gives many examples of such relationships in the theory, practice, and control of medicine.

Guenter Risse, Toby Gelfand, and Eric Christianson, respectively, have written the essays on New Spain, New France, and New England. They compare new