When it comes to researchers interested in the history, ethics or anthropology of bodies and collections, I’d always be one of the first to read anything written by Zoe Crossland, Elizabeth Hallam, Ewa Domanska, Liv Nilson Stutz, or Duncan Sayer- to name a few (though of course not always agreeing with all their points of view).
However, for the purpose of this post I thought I should point out some colleagues I follow on various media; the list is BY NO MEANS comprehensive, as there are many more whose work I truly enjoy, but I tried to pick some who are quite active (publish on a regular basis), and who create various kinds of content, just to show what kind of things are available out there.
To start with, on Twitter, I would suggest you have a look at
Visual Plague’s project at CRASSH ( @visualplague) for anyone interested in medical history, anthropology&digital humanities
Verity Darke (Burke) ( @VerityDarke) who very nicely combines an interest in literary studies with history of anatomy and 19th century
James Poskett ( @jamesposkett) for a global historical take on themes such as phrenology, empire and print
Philippe Charlier (@doctroptard ), ‘Médecin légiste / anthropologue’, whose account showcases analysis of saints relics or medieval kings bodies (and probably one of the few specialists whose name attaches to a news title such as ‘le paléopathologiste le plus sexy du PAF’)
Emily Evans ( @anatomyuk ) for anatomical illustrations and art
Tom Booth ( @Boothicus) talking about ancient DNA and bone diagenesis
and Caroline (@FlickeringLamps) for some great overviews of cemeteries around the world.
On Youtube I would suggest having a look at:
Carla Valentine – The Chick and the Dead. Who doesn’t know Carla already? Technical Curator at Pathology Museum at QMUL, very present on Twitter, the blogosphere or Instagram, but I think my favourite content she does is the one on her Youtube channel.
When it comes to blogs on human bodies there are several I read, but in particular I’d suggest:
These bones of mine , a blog introducing osteology, anatomy and archaeology topics
Death & the Maiden– “Exploring the relationship between women & death”
Marieke Hendriksen’s The Medicine Chest on preserving and displaying bodies in the history of anatomy and medicine
Photographer’s Susan Elaine Jones’s blog which shows a different take on visiting museums & collections- the art of anatomy
as well as the now ended project Morbid Anatomy Museum’s blog
And on Facebook, William Moss posts a great deal of archaeological news on the Council for British Archaeology page, and Kristina Killgrove on the Powered by Osteons – by Kristina Killgrove page.
Many of these names are active across multiple platforms, and I invite you to discover them, as well as many other great researchers whom I could not include here for space constraints. I’ve also excluded those names whose works I’ve already mentioned in previous posts in this series, as well as some great twitter accounts of medical/anatomical/ anthropological archives, books or events ( e.g. SSSB Conference @sssbconf ; the collections of Surgeons’ Hall Museums @SHM_Collections ; Library & Archive at Surgeons’ Hall/Royal College of Surgeons of Edinburgh @RCSEdArchive or the Bone Rooms account @BoneRoomsBook ). The goal was to simply show the breadth of interests which are out there- from history of science to forensic medicine and archaeology, and to highlight those which are more in tune with what I personally focus on. These might also be good starting points for thinking about bodies, as well as sources of inspiration for anyone thinking of starting a blog/channel/account.
Looking forward to any other suggestions you might have!
Featured image: An écorché figure (life-size), lying prone on a table by C. Landseer, 1813 (?). Wellcome L0020561.jpg (via Wikipedia)