Charles and Linda Wilson Professor in the History of Medicine; Director, Humanities in Medicine Profile Image
Charles and Linda Wilson Professor in the History of Medicine; Director, Humanities in Medicine History dcooperowens2@unl.edu (402) 472-2414 603 Oldfather Hall
JOINED THE DEPARTMENT

2019

BIO

Deirdre Cooper Owens is The Charles and Linda Wilson Professor in the History of Medicine and Director of the Humanities in Medicine program. She is also an Organization of American Historians’ (OAH) Distinguished Lecturer. A popular public speaker, she has published essays, book chapters, and blog pieces on a number of issues that concern African American experiences. Her first book, Medical Bondage: Race, Gender and the Origins of American Gynecology (UGA Press, 2017) won the 2018 Darlene Clark Hine Book Award from the OAH as the best book written in African American women’s and gender history.

Professor Cooper Owens is also the Director of the Program in African American History at the Library Company of Philadelphia, the country’s oldest cultural institution. Currently, she is working on a second book project that examines mental illness during the era of United States slavery and is also writing a popular biography of Harriet Tubman that examines her through the lens of disability. She primarily teaches classes on the history of medicine.

COURSES TAUGHT

HIST 228: History of Medicine in Western Society (Fall 2019)

PUBLICATIONS

“Black Maternal and Infant Health: Historical Legacies of Slavery” by Deirdre Cooper Owens and Sharla Fett, American Journal of Public Health (2019)

Medical Bondage: Race, Gender, and The Origins of American Gynecology (UGA Press, 2017)

INVITED TALKS AND CONFERENCE PAPERS

Keynote Speaker, Law, Difference, and Healthcare Conference, Princeton University

Keynote Speaker, Stephanie Camp Memorial Lecture, University of Washington

Invited Speaker, The London School of Economics

Keynote Speaker, Crown Forum, Morehouse College

HONORS AND AWARDS

Winner of the 2018 Darlene Clark Hine Book Prize for the best book on African American women’s history or gender history, Organization of American Historians

Contributor to Understanding and Teaching American Slavery (University of WI Press, 2016), 2019 James Robinson Prize for the most outstanding contribution to the teaching and learning of history in any field, American Historical Association

EDUCATIONAL BACKGROUND

Ph.D., UCLA (History), 2008

M.A., Clark Atlanta University (African American Studies, History Concentration), 2001

B.A., Bennett College, 1994

EXPERTISE/AREAS OF STUDY

History of Medicine;
Slavery;
19th Century U.S. History;
Women's History

ASSORTED LINKS TO ONLINE WORKS AND RECOGNITION

Director, Program in African American History, The Library Company of Philadelphia

deirdrecooperowens.com

Medical Bondage: Race, Gender, and The Origins of American Gynecology on Amazon