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HomeContentsThemes > Health

Contents

Introduction
565.01   An introduction to health
Hospitals and asylums
565.02   Charles Nègre: Vincennes Imperial Asylum (1859)
Health tratments
565.03   Dmitry Ermakov: Oriental massage
Mental health and psychiatry
565.04   Hugn Welch Diamond: Patients at Surrey County Asylum (ca. 1855)
565.05   Insane asylum patients (1870s)
565.06   James Crichton-Browne: West Riding Lunatic Asylum, Wakefield, Yorkshire, Great Britain
565.07   Albert Londe: Female patients with mental illness
565.08   Joy Christiansen: Family Gathering
Disability
565.09   Picturing disability
Documentary studies
565.10   W. Eugene Smith: Minamata
This theme includes example sections and will be revised and added to as we proceed. Suggestions for additions, improvements and the correction of factual errors are always appreciated. 
  
Status: Collect > Document > Analyse > Improve
 
  
Introduction 
  
565.01   Documentary >  An introduction to health 
  
The use of photography in health and medicine is diverse with each branch having its own histories, collections, styles and publications. The themes here can only touch the surface of a vast subject. It stretches from documentary studies on housing conditions[1] and working conditions[2] which impacted on health through to how the manifestations of these conditions manifested themselves within the framework of public health policy and medicine. Photographers documented institutions for example the series of Charles Nègre on the Vincennes Imperial Asylum (1859), provided photographs for medical records for example the portraits taken by Hugh Welch Diamond[3] of the patients at the Surrey County Asylum in England taken in the 1850s, and photographers like William H. Bell and Reed Brockway Bontecou studied medical injuries and wounds from the American Civil War (1861-1865).
 
Photography became a tool in both health and medicine for diagnosis for example the studies of Nadar of a hermaphrodite (1860) and photographers such as Abraham Bogardus, Jeremiah Gurney and Hugh Welch Diamond providing images that were used as the basis for illustrations in publications. Medical research on muscles and nerves was advanced through the work of Dr Guillaume-Amant Duchenne de Boulogne, assisted by photographer Adrien Tournachon[4], authored Mécanisme de la physionomie humaine, ou analyse électrophysiologique des passions (1862). Collaborations between diverse branches of science were commonplace and when Charles Darwin was studying emotions and facial expressions it was photographer Oscar Gustave Rejlander who supplied the necessary illustrations and acted as the model in a few of them.[5]
 
Before it was possible to print photographs in books illustrations were based on them using woodcuts, engravings and lithographs. Photographs could also be "tipped-in" to publications a process that required considerable effort making individual prints for each publication and then affixing them to the page an expensive process. Even so there were shorted lived journals and books produced in this way including Balmanno Squire's A Manual of the Diseases of the Skin (1862) and A. Hardy & A. de Montméja's Clinique Photographique des Maladies de la Peau (1882)[6]
AIDS - HIV
Charity
Eating disorders
Medical
Mental health and psychiatry
X-rays
The concentration in these themes is on early photographic examples and it will be expanded to include more recent material over time.[7] 
  
Hospitals and asylums 
  
565.02   Documentary >  Charles Nègre: Vincennes Imperial Asylum (1859) 
About this photographer | Photographs by this photographer 
  
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The following contemporary account was published on the "Imperial Asylum at Vincennes for Convalescent Workman" in The Medical News and Library in December 1860:
Imperial Asylum at Vincennes for Convalescent Workman. - The Moniteur Universal of the 9th of July contains an interesting account of the convalescent hospital, established by the Emperor of the French, in the neighbourhood of Paris, from which we extract the following particulars: —
 
The Asylum of Vincennes was founded by a decree of the 8th March, 1855, for the temporary reception, during their convalescence, of workmen who had received injuries or contracted diseases. The building having been finished, and the internal arrangements completed, the inauguration of the Imperial Asylum took place on the 31st of August, 1857. It has now been in operation for nearly three years.
 
Nearly forty acres of forest, belonging to the domains of the Crown, were consecrated to the Asylum, which is built upon an elevated terrace, freely exposed to the air from all quarters. Since the opening of the institution, up to the end of June 1860 (comprehending a period of two years and ten months), the number of convalescents admitted has amounted to 14,000. These convalescents belong to the following categories: 1st. Convalescents sent from the hospitals of Paris and the suburbs; 2d. Convalescents sent by the local charitable institutions of the city; 3. Convalescents from injuries received in the public works; 4th. Members of societies of workmen established for their mutual assistance; 5th. Workmen belonging to establishments, the directors of which have obtained from the Minister of the Interior authorization to send, on payment of a subscription, their convalescents to the Asylum, such as the railroads, gasworks, and some large private establishments; 6th. Workmen who have been treated at their own homes, and who have received from their medical attendant certificate of convalescence.
 
It is by the express orders of the Emperor that the Asylum is now open, without distinction, to every convalescent workman. There are at present 411 beds.
 
Two elegant vehicles are attached to the institution, and bear the imperial arms. One of these is of the same size as an ordinary omnibus, the other is somewhat smaller. Every day one or other of these vehicles, according to the number requiring removal, goes to the various hospitals to pick up the convalescents, and even goes to the residences of those who have been treated at their own homes. The same vehicles convey the inmates back to Paris when they leave the Asylum. The first time that the large omnibus stopped in front of the Hotel-Dieu a crowd of spectators speedily assembled; people asked one an other what could be the meaning of this elegant vehicle with the imperial arms in such a locality; but when the spectators saw the poor convalescents, weakened by disease, come out of the hospital and get into the omnibus, and when it was known that they were about to be conveyed to the Imperial Asylum, they broke out into hearty applause. How, in fact, could they help being affected on seeing the paternal cares of the Emperor lavished indiscriminately on all the workmen, on all the laborious classes?
 
The mean term of residence in the Asylum is 22 days. Thanks to the hygienic resources of the institution, the period of convalescence from fevers is comparatively short. The principle of the Asylum is that every convalescent shall remain in the Asylum until he is completely restored to health, or until his disease has been recognized as incurable.
 
Diet of the Institution. — The diet is regulated by the director, and by the superintending medical officer of the establishment. Care has been taken to fix the hours of the different meals, in conformity with the usual habits of the working classes. At half past seven in the morning the inmates get a bowl of soup. Breakfast is at half past ten, and consists of stewed meat and vegetables. Five o'clock is the dinner hour: this meal consists of soup, roast meat, and vegetables. Each convalescent receives daily about a pint of wine, and as much bread of the first quality as he desires. On the average, each inmate consumes daily about a pound and a half of bread. If necessary, a special dietary is prescribed in particular cases. The sum allotted for the food of each inmate is tenpence-halfpenny a day, not comprehending the general expenses of the establishment.
 
If the convalescents desire it, and if their strength permits, they are employed in various capacities about the establishment, under the direction of the gardener, the smith, the carpenter, etc. In this case, they receive a small sum of money and half a pint of wine in addition to the regular allowance Those of the inmates who do not work have various amusements provided for them, such as bowls, skittles, dominoes, etc.; cards are prohibited.
 
The library is open daily, and contains 4000 volumes, and illustrated newspapers. Most of the volumes have been presented by the booksellers of Paris. In general, about 50 readers may be found in the library at a time; on one occasion 96 were counted.
 
The conduct of all in the Asylum is exemplary. They submit without a word to the rules of the institution, are courteous to one another, take care of the furniture of the establishment and of the flowers in the garden, and keep their dormitories in a state of perfect cleanliness. Although not required, the majority of the inmates attend chapel on Sunday.
 
The staff of the establishment consists of a director, a treasurer, a medical superintendent, with three resident pupils; six Sisters of the Order of the Ladies of St. Augustine of Belgium ; a secretary and five clerks ; a storekeeper; four overseers; and at least forty persons in subordinate positions, such as cooks, grooms, gardeners, etc.
 
An infirmary is connected with the Asylum. During the year 185S, 1859, nearly 1100 patients, presenting various affections more or less severe, have been under treatment ; during this time only 30 deaths occurred.
 
The anticipated expenses for the present year are between fourteen and fifteen thousand pounds.— Ed. Med. Journ., Sept. 1860.[8]
 
  
Health tratments 
  
565.03   Documentary >  Dmitry Ermakov: Oriental massage 
About this photographer | Photographs by this photographer 
  
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The collection of Dimitry Ermakov (1846-1916) held at the Georgian National Museum consists of approximately 128 albums, 17,434 prints, 14,100 glass plate negatives and 3,000 stereo cards, as well as registers and sales catalogues that Ermakov used in his shop. The collection depicts a great variety of ethnic groups, people, cities, architectural monuments in the Caucasus and Asia Minor of the late 1800s and early 1900s.
 
Dimitry Ermakov was a leading photographer in Georgia and the wider Caucasian and Asian Minor during an interesting period in the history of the region. He documented places and groups of people that have undergone major changes in Georgia, Azerbaijan, Armenia as well as in <Turkey and Persia. Dimitry Ermakov traveled and photographed also in Samarkand and Bukhara in Central Asia, in the Russian Republics of Dagestan, Circassia, Chechnya and Ingushetia and in the Crimea. This collection is a resource of considerable cultural and historic importance in understanding the region during a period of immense changes.
 
Georgia, situated at the crossroads of Europe to Asia, has always been recognized as the cultural center of the Caucasus. Because of Georgia’s geo-political location and because it has continually striven towards Western values, any European trend introduced here has been adopted surprisingly quickly.
 
In 1839, in Paris, François Aragó, a famous scientist and politician, announced the invention of photography by Daguerre. A few years later the photographic process became popular in Georgia just as it had in European capitals of Paris, London and Berlin, Tbilisi was also charmed by the newly invented process of “capturing stable images by means of a light beam.
 
According to Aragó, photography “would not only support the development of art but also science.” In Georgia of the 1850s, like France, England and Germany, this new European invention took root very quickly. However, unlike Europe, the development of photography in Georgia was not accompanied by heated discussions on the recognition of photography as art, nor did anybody call the photographic process that “diabolical art from France,” (as it was referred to in German periodical Leipziger Anzeiger). Georgian society immediately recognized the European novelty as a medium of modernity that permitted observation of the world during its period of industrialization and created the ground for a new view of the world.
 
Dimitry Ermakov (1846-1916) is distinguished among the group of photographers who started their careers in Georgia between 1850 and 1890. This generation of photographers created unique visual annals of historical changes; work which apart from its documentary importance, also has a highly artistic value. The subjects revealed in Dimitry Ermakov’s archive are extremely rich: the construction of Caucasian railroad, development of the ports of Batumi and Poti, Tbilisi industrial exhibition, archeological and ethnographic expeditions, expeditions to Svaneti and other regions of Georgia, a journey to Sukhum-Kale, political rallies in Tbilisi and Telavi, the industrialization of Georgia and urban development, the countries of the South Caucasus, Persia, Turkey, Central Asia, Russia, and significant cultural events in North Caucasus.
 
This archive is not only a fascinating part of Georgia’s graphic legacy, but is also an important part of the world’s photographic heritage, and continues to be researched. The Georgian National Musem collection includes the images by other photographers working in Georgia during that period, such as Alexander Rionashvili, Vladimir Barkanov, Alexander Engel, Eduard Klar, Vittorio Sella, Boris Mishchenko and several unknowns.
 
In 1918, Dimitry Ermakov’s collection was jointly bought by Georgian historical and ethnographic societies and Tbilisi State University. In 1930 the archive was donated to the Georgian National Museum. The collection is presently preserved in the Georgian National Museum. From 2000-2010, the Georgian National Museum, the Horizon Foundation of Netherlands and Rotterdam Photo Museum carried out Dimitry Ermakov’s photographic archive restoration and conservation project. A portion of this 10-year effort to restore Ermakov’s archive, including several series of photos made in Georgia, is being exhibited to the public for first time. These images reveal Georgia’s historically unique cultural and geographic condition, at the crossroads of European civilization, an achievement made possible through the mystery of photography.
 
Courtesy of the Georgian National Museum 
  
   Dmitry  Ermakov 
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Mental health and psychiatry 
  
565.04   Documentary >  Hugn Welch Diamond: Patients at Surrey County Asylum (ca. 1855) 
About this photographer | Photographs by this photographer 
  
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Hugh Welch Diamond[9] used photography as an addition to the patient records that he kept in his role as superintendent of the female department of Surrey County Asylum in England. His photographs showing the insane were used as the basis of illustrations for the articles of John Conolly (1794-1866).[10] 
  
   Scientific Medical 
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565.05   Documentary >  Insane asylum patients (1870s) 
  
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This series of portraits of Louisa Blaney, Caroline Nightingale and Elizabeth Tappenden taken by an unknown photographer, probably British, are in the Metropolitan Museum of Art
  
   Scientific Medical 
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565.06   Documentary >  James Crichton-Browne: West Riding Lunatic Asylum, Wakefield, Yorkshire, Great Britain 
  
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   Scientific Medical 
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565.07   Documentary >  Albert Londe: Female patients with mental illness 
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   Scientific Medical 
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565.08   Documentary >  Joy Christiansen: Family Gathering 
About this photographer | Photographs by this photographer 
  
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An artist statement by Joy Christiansen provides the setting for this series:
In today’s culture, negative body image and eating disorders are increasingly common. This is influenced by an overabundance of visual representations that occur in film, television and mass print media promoting dieting, thinness, and the objectification of women’s bodies. In response to this trend, Family Gathering, a photo-based installation, presents the harsh reality of the disorder through personal interviews of both individual sufferers and from their family members and friends.
 
In this exhibition, a room full of furniture is arranged in the format of a typical upper-middle class living room in the United States. Each piece of furniture is adorned with photographic imagery and text from the personal interviews. The combination of furniture, photography and text is used to initiate dialogue about this difficult and important subject. The comfortable and familiar veneer of the furniture serves as a welcome invitation to the viewer. Once the subtle imagery and text become visible, anonymous stories are revealed through each piece of furniture, bringing the room to life.
 
  
   Joy  Christiansen 
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Disability 
  
565.09   Documentary >  Picturing disability 
  
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Midget, feeble-minded, crippled, lame, and insane: these terms and the historical photographs that accompany them may seem shocking to present-day audiences. A young woman with no arms wears a revealing dress and smiles for the camera as she holds a tea cup with her toes; a man holds up two prosthetic legs while his own legs are bared to the knees to show his missing feet. The photos were used as promotional material for circus sideshows, charity drives, and art galleries. They were found on begging cards and in family albums. In their book Picturing Disability, Bogdan and his collaborators gather over 200 historical photographs showing how people with disabilities have been presented and exploring the contexts in which they were photographed.
 
In his book Bogdan not only examines the images, he also turns his gaze on the people behind the camera. He examines the historic and cultural environment of the photographs to decipher the relationship between the images and the perspectives of the picture makers. In analyzing the visual rhetoric of these photographs, Bogdan identifies the wide variety of genres, from sideshow souvenirs to clinical photographs. Ranging from the 1860s, when photographs first became readily available, to the 1970s, when the disability rights movement became a force for significant change, Bogdan chronicles the evolution of disability image creation. Picturing Disability takes the reader beyond judging images as positive or slanderous to reveal how particular contexts generate specific emotions and lasting depictions. In this exhibit Bogdan shares a some images from that his book.[11][12] 
  
Documentary studies 
  
565.10   Documentary >  W. Eugene Smith: Minamata 
About this photographer | Photographs by this photographer 
  
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Between 1971 and 1973 W. Eugene Smith lived with his Japanese wife Aileen in Minamata, Japan during the period that deformities and health issues in the surrounding area were being caused by mercury poisoning. The poisoning was caused by the discharge of heavy metals from a Chisso factory into the water sources which was taken up by fish and so affected the human population. W. Eugene Smith documented the health issues and the public meetings leading to him being attacked by Chisso employees.[13]
 
The most famous photograph of the series was Tomoko Uemura in Her Bath which showed a severly deformed and naked child being held by her mother while being bathed. The photograph was withdrawn from circulation out of the respect for the family.[14] 
  

Footnotes 
  
  1. Λ The studies of urban poverty and inadequate housing such as the works by Thomas Annan, Archibald Burns, Jacob A. Riis and numerous others in the nineteenth century fall into this category. 
      
  2. Λ The work of Lewis W. Hine for the National Child Labor Committee (NCLC) in the USA is the often cited example for these. 
      
  3. Λ Carolyn Bloore, 1980, Hugh Welch Diamond: Doctor, Antiquarian, Photographer, (Twickenham: Orleans House Gallery) [Exhibition catalogue] 
      
  4. Λ Adrien Alban Tournachon, sometimes called "Nadar jeune" was the younger brother of Parisian photographer Nadar. 
      
  5. Λ Charles Darwin, 1872, The Expression of Emotion in Man and Animals (London) 
      
  6. Λ A. Hardy & A. de Montméja, 1882, Clinique Photographique des Maladies de la Peau, (Paris: H. Lauwereyns)
     
    The third [and last] edition, contains some images that were not issued in previous editions. Some of the photographs are colored, showing in graphic detail the discoloration and effects of their individual maladies. Six of the plates are reproductions of casts moulded on patients and colored by Italian artist by M. Baretta, from the collection of the Museum of Saint Louis Hospital. 
      
  7. Λ If you are interested in and collect medical magery and would like to assist in making this theme as good as it can be for the benefit of all let me know - alan@luminous-lint.com 
      
  8. Λ December, 1860, "Imperial Asylum at Vincennes for Convalescent Workman", The Medical News and Library, vol. XVIII, no. 216, pp. 184-185 
      
  9. Λ Carolyn Bloore, 1980, Hugh Welch Diamond: Doctor, Antiquarian, Photographer, (Twickenham: Orleans House Gallery) [Exhibition catalogue] 
      
  10. Λ Illustrations based on the photographs of Dr. Hugh Welch Diamond were used to illustrate articles published in the Medical Times and Gazette that were published in a single volume as - John Conolly, 1858-1859, The Physiognomy of Insanity, (London: John Churchill) [A series of thirteen papers on the Physiognomy of Insanity, in the Medical Times and Gazette. Twelve of the articles Included illustrations based on photographs by Hugh Welch Diamond] 
      
  11. Λ Text courtesy of Robert Bogdan, December 2012. 
      
  12. Λ Robert Bogdan, Martin Elks & James Knoll, 2011, Picturing Disability, (Syracuse University Press) 
      
  13. Λ In 1973 W, Eugene Smith''s portfolio, Minamata: Life-Sacred and Profane ([Tokyo], [1973]) was published with 12 reproductions of Smith's chilling photographs of Japan's environmental victims; with text in Japanese and English. The book which came out in 1975 is a classic of activist environmental photojournalism - W. Eugene Smith and Aileen M. Smith, 1975, Minamata: Words and photographs by W. Eugene Smith and Aileen M. Smith, (New York: Holt, Rinehart and Winston). The front cover carries a blunt message "The story of the poisoning of a city, and of the people who choose to carry the burden of courage." 
      
  14. Λ Jim Hughes, 2000, "Tomoko Uemure, R.I.P.", Camera Arts magazine, available online - digitaljournalist.org/issue0007/hughes.htm
      

alan@luminous-lint.com

 
  

HomeContents > Further research

 
  
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General reading 
  
Bogdan, Robert; Elks, Martin & Knoll, James A., 2012, Picturing Disability: Beggar, Freak, Citizen and Other Photographic Rhetoric, (Syracuse University Press) isbn-10: 0815633025 isbn-13: 978-0815633020 [Δ
  
Eikenberry, Jill & Tempest, Terry, 1998, Art.Rage.Us: Art and Writing by Women with Breast Cancer, (Chronicle Books) isbn-10: 0811821307 [Δ
  
 
  
Readings on, or by, individual photographers 
  
Sophie Calle 
  
Calle, Sophie, 2012, Sophie Calle: Blind, (Actes Sud; Braille edition) isbn-10: 2330000588 isbn-13: 978-2330000585 [Δ
  
Lauren Greenfield 
  
Greenfield, Lauren & Brumberg, Joan Jacobs, 2006, Thin, (Chronicle Books) isbn-10: 081185633X isbn-13: 978-0811856331 [Δ
  
Sebastião Salgado 
  
Salgado, Sebastião, 2003, L'Eradication de la polio, (Seuil) [Δ
  
W. Eugene Smith 
  
Smith, W. Eugene & Smith, Aileen M., 1975, Minamata: Words and Photographs, (New York: Holt, Rinehart and Winston) [Δ
  
 
  
If you feel this list is missing a significant book or article please let me know - Alan - alan@luminous-lint.com 
  

HomeContentsPhotographers > Photographers worth investigating

 
Jane Evelyn Atwood  (1947-) • Marat Baltabaev • William H. Bell  (1830-1910) • Carl Curman  (1833-1913) • Hugh Welch Diamond  (check) • Duchenne & Adrien Tournachon • Philip Jones Griffiths  (1936-2008) • Larry Louie • Wilhelm Konrad Röntgen  (1845-1923) • W. Eugene Smith  (1918-1978) • Southworth & Hawes • Oliviero Toscani  (1942-)
HomeThemesDocumentary > Health 
 
A wider gazeA closer lookRelated topics 
  
Hypnotism 
Medical 
Mental health and psychiatry 
X-rays 
 
  

HomeContentsOnline exhibitions > Health

Please submit suggestions for Online Exhibitions that will enhance this theme.
Alan - alan@luminous-lint.com

 
  
ThumbnailDocumentary: 19th Century Charles Nègre and the Vincennes Imperial Asylum (1859) 
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Released (August 23, 2010)
ThumbnailDr. Hugh Welch Diamond: Patients at Surrey Asylum (ca. 1855) 
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Released (October 30, 2013)
ThumbnailJean-Philippe Charbonnier: Psychiatric hospitals 
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Released (November 27, 2006)
ThumbnailJoy Christiansen: Family Gathering 
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Released (April 14, 2007)
ThumbnailPicturing Disability 
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Released (January 18, 2013)
ThumbnailPortrait: The Guinea Pig Club 
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Released (July 18, 2010) Warning: These images may be considered disturbing as this exhibition remembers the pioneering plastic surgery of Archibald McIndoe. Thanks to Nicola Kurtz who photographed the 65th reunion of The Guinea Pig Club in September 2006.
ThumbnailScientific: Medical 
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Released (May 16, 2010) Warning: These images may be considered disturbing and I would recommend that you do not view this exhibition if you are of a sensitive disposition.
ThumbnailScientific: Medical - Guillaume-Amant Duchenne de Boulogne 
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Released (May 8, 2010)
ThumbnailScientific: Medical - Mental health and hypnosis 
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Improved (October 22, 2010) Warning: These images may be considered disturbing and I would recommend that you do not view this exhibition if you are of a sensitive disposition.
ThumbnailScientific: Medical - Mental health and hypnosis 
Title | Lightbox | Checklist
Improved (October 22, 2010) Warning: These images may be considered disturbing and I would recommend that you do not view this exhibition if you are of a sensitive disposition.
ThumbnailScientific: Photomicroscopy of Joseph Janvier Woodward (1833-1884) 
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Released (August 23, 2006)
  
 
  

HomeVisual indexes > Health

Please submit suggestions for Visual Indexes to enhance this theme.
Alan - alan@luminous-lint.com

 
  
   Photographer 
  
ThumbnailDmitry Ermakov: Oriental massage 
About this photographer | Photographs by this photographer 
ThumbnailHenry Peach Robinson: Fading Away 
About this photographer | Photographs by this photographer 
ThumbnailHugh Welch Diamond: Surrey County Lunatic Asylum 
About this photographer | Photographs by this photographer 
ThumbnailW. Eugene Smith: Minamata 
About this photographer | Photographs by this photographer 
 
  
   Themes 
  
ThumbnailDocumentary: Health 
ThumbnailDocumentary: Health: AIDS - HIV 
ThumbnailDocumentary: Health: Abortion 
ThumbnailDocumentary: Health: Agent Orange 
ThumbnailDocumentary: Health: Cancer 
ThumbnailDocumentary: Health: Dental care 
ThumbnailDocumentary: Health: Infant mortality 
ThumbnailDocumentary: Health: Mercury poisoning 
ThumbnailDocumentary: Health: Radiation 
ThumbnailDocumentary: Health: Tuberculosis 
 
  
Refreshed: 04 August 2014, 09:49
 
  
 
  
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