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The Doctors Blackwell

The Doctors Blackwell

How Two Pioneering Sisters Brought Medicine to Women--and Women to Medicine

Book - 2021 | First edition.
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"The vivid biography of two pioneering sisters who, together, became America's first female doctors and transformed New York's medical establishment by creating a hospital by and for women. Elizabeth Blackwell believed from an early age that she was destined for greatness beyond the scope of "ordinary" womanhood. Though the world recoiled at the notion of a woman studying medicine, her intelligence and intensity won her the acceptance of the all-male medical establishment and in 1849 she became the first woman in America to receive a medical degree. But Elizabeth's story is incomplete without her often forgotten sister, Emily, the third woman in America to receive a medical degree. Exploring the sisters' allies, enemies and enduring partnership, Nimura presents a story of both trial and triumph: Together the sisters' founded the New York Infirmary for Indigent Women and Children, the first hospital staffed entirely by women. Both sisters were tenacious and visionary; they were also judgmental, uncompromising, and occasionally misogynistic--their convictions as 19th-century women often contradicted their ambitions. From Bristol, England, to the new cities of antebellum America, this work of rich history follows the sister doctors as they transform the nineteenth century medical establishment and, in turn, our contemporary one"-- Provided by publisher.
Publisher: New York : W.W. Norton & Company, [2021]
Edition: First edition.
ISBN: 9780393635546
Characteristics: 320 pages : illustrations ; 24 cm


From Library Staff

Elizabeth Blackwell believed from an early age that she was destined for a mission beyond the scope of "ordinary" womanhood. Her intelligence and intensity ultimately won her the acceptance of the male medical establishment. In 1849, she became the first woman in America to receive an M... Read More »

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Jun 09, 2021

Important to know about these trailblazing sisters who overcame total blockage by the establishment, followed by limited educational and professional acceptance, then a modicum of respect. Interesting that toward the end, the establishment medical schools were promoting themselves on the basis of principles espoused by the Blackwells a half-century before. The same old story concerning pioneers: First they are blocked, then they are ridiculed, then begrudgingly accepted, then eventually imitated.

Jan 10, 2021

WSJ recommendation


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