Posted in Project

Research Decision

For my paper, I’ve decided to research the pacing of societal advancement. The situation of Henrietta’s family intrigued me, and I wanted to further examine it. For example, when the author called the Lacks family to discuss Henrietta’s life, all of the decisions were subject to men’s approval, though such values had long since begun to dissolve in the public eye. Does race impact this difference, or is it more a class issue? Perhaps it is neither, and the cause is the family’s location in a small town. I will use this assignment to research the trends of values such as this patriarchy, as well as other broad topics like racism, abuse tendencies, extent of education, etc.

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One thought on “Research Decision

  1. Emily, I can see a lot of ways you can focus your thinking. I am personally very inspired by your thinking about how gender/sex may have affected this situation in certain ways. For example, what is the relationship between patriarchy and medicine for many of us? Despite the history, there are far more women serving as physicans and men as nurses in healthcare now. But how does the history of men’s power, especially men’s power over women in healthcare, affect the ways women feel excluded/included in medical professions, scientific studies, and even just at the doctor’s office? You might be interested to get local here. In which case, look into the history of Woman’s Hospital for example. Or you might want to get controversial. In which case, consider looking into the history of Planned Parenthood, etc. There’s been a lot published in recent years by feminist historians on American women’s struggles, exploitation, and challenges to healthcare. A history professor friend of mine directly studies this. For what it’s worth, here’s her faculty page at Grinnell College: https://www.grinnell.edu/users/lewiscar. Just sharing a connection!

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