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February 7, 1966

Elizabeth Garrett Anderson

JAMA. 1966;195(6):503. doi:10.1001/jama.1966.03100060143059

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The first woman physician in England came to medicine through chance. Elizabeth Garrett Anderson (1836-1917) was first of all a social reformer. When she thought of studying medicine, she intended simply to open a new profession to women. But once she began her struggle to win a medical education, she became dedicated to that profession. Her commitment dominated the rest of her life and altered the lives of many others.

This fine biography, based largely on family papers and the unpublished records of hospitals and medical schools, will interest the reader both as a social document and as a readable account of a great lady. Dr. Anderson's achievements appear impressive: She was the first woman dean of a medical school, the first woman to earn the MD degree from the University of Paris, and the first woman mayor in England. Somehow she also managed to combine marriage with her career.

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