Learning from the Wounded: The Civil War and the Rise of American Medical Science. By Shauna Devine. (Chapel Hill: University of North Carolina Press, 2014. Pp. 384. Cloth, $39.95.) Shauna Devine's Learning from the Wounded is a major, ambitious, and on the whole successful effort in bridging the gap between two relatively discrete historiographies: that specific to Civil War medicine, and the larger body of work on the nineteenth-century American medical profession and medical science. Focusing on the Union side (leaving the Confederacy for her next book), Devine argues that the war "was more than a broad school of experience; it was also a conduit for the production, development, and dissemination of new medical ideas" (5). Government support for the collection of medical information, the rise of laboratory and clinical research and experimentation, increased medical specialization, and emerging techniques for the management of infectious diseases characterize what she terms the "Civil War medical model," which would have a profound effect on American medicine (5). Devine begins by discussing William Hammond's ascension to the position of surgeon general, his strict standards for military surgeons, and "Circular No. 2," a one-page directive instructing medical officers to prepare case reports and
The Journal of the Civil War Era – University of North Carolina Press
Published: Feb 5, 2015
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