Dr. Lindsay Wilson

Associate Professor 
(BA Wesleyan University, MA, PhD Stanford University, 1982)
European Social and Cultural History, France, Women, Medicine
Email: Lindsay.Wilson@nau.edu
Office phone: 928-523-6217
Office LA 115B 

Teaching interests 

I received my PhD in history and humanities, and nearly all my courses are interdisciplinary.  My general approach to education is that students should be encouraged to expect the best of our curriculum and of themselves.

I teach intensive writing courses at both the undergraduate and graduate levels and have come, as a result, to become increasingly interested in the craft of history. History 300W, for example, has two purposes: to explore the social and cultural history of witch beliefs and witch-hunts and to develop skills in writing history.  Students master specific content matter, but, just as importantly, they are guided to an understanding of how knowledge is arrived at in history. What counts as evidence? Upon what criteria is the quality of any historical account measured? In History 498 and in graduate classes, the focus is on how to pose and research significant historical questions.

My courses in the social history of medicine explore changing and differing concepts of health and disease across time and cultures. Etiologies of disease often incorporate and sanction ideologies, offering a mirror into social norms and points of contention.  As a result, case studies in the social history of medicine can be of particular interest to anthropologists and political scientists as well as historians.

Courses taught 


The Development of Europe to 1650

Witch-Hunts: A Social and Cultural History

Renaissance and Reformation

Early Modern Europe
Medicine, Cultures, and Values
Bodies and Souls
In Sickness and In Health


Medicine and Culture

Do Gender, Race, and Class Matter in Medicine?

Research interests and publications 


Women and Medicine in the French Enlightenment:  The Debate over Maladies des Femmes.  Baltimore and London: The Johns Hopkins University Press, 1993.  This book examines a number of eighteenth-century cause celebres revolving around women and having important social and political ramifications.  It reveals the extent to which the traditional values of hierarchy, privilege, and patriarchy were repeatedly challenged in the decades prior to the French Revolution and explores the fragility of medical judgment in attempting to resolve disputes that were grounded as much on conflicting visions of society as of nature.  Such an approach broadens the parameters of the history of medicine to encompass new currents in cultural and social history.


“Representations of Women in the History of Science in France:  Going Beyond Names without Faces and Faces without Doctrines.”  In Women and Sciences, Seventeenth Century to Present: Pioneers, Activists, and Protagonists, ed. by Donna Andréolle and Véronique Molinari, 140-154.  Newcastle upon Tyne: Cambridge Scholars, December, 2011.

“’Judge the Work and Not the Man’: Casting Light on Marie Curie, Sigmund Freud, Identity Politics, and a Double Standard in Historiography,” Connections: European Studies Annual Review 6 (spring, 2010/11): 4-8.

“Bodies of Knowledge, Local and Global,” review forum of Mary Fissell’s Vernacular Bodies; The Politics of Reproduction in Early Modern Europe, Journal of Women’s History 22.3 (fall, 2010): 204-208.


Review of Timothy Verhoeven’s Transatlantic Anti-Catholicism.  France and the United States in the Nineteenth Century.  Left History.  Spring/Summer, 2012.

Review of James Webb’s Humanity’s Burden: A Global History of Malaria. Canadian Journal of History.  Fall, 2011.

Review of Juta Schickore’s The Microscope and the Eye: A History of Reflections 1740-1870.   The American Historical Review.  June, 2009.

Conference papers

“Mme Du Châtelet’s Most Important Experiment,” Western Association of Women Historians (WAWH) Conference, Portland, OR, May, 2013.

“Crossing Boundaries of Gender, Genre, and Country: The Intellectual Trajectory of Mme Du Châtelet,” Women in French International Conference, Tempe, AZ, February, 2012.

“Words Create Worlds: Finding Connecting Links between Clémence Royer (1830-1902), a French Woman of Science, and Marie Curie (1867-1934), a French Woman Scientist,” Twelfth International Conference of the International Society for the Study of European Ideas (ISSEI), Ankara, Turkey, August, 2010. 

Plenary Speaker, “Is the World Made Up of Stories or of Atoms?  Faith, Science, and the Power of Stories in Defining Women’s Spirituality,” International Conference on Women and Spirituality, Aix-en-Provence, France, June, 2009.

“Crossing Boundaries, Connecting Disciplines:  Reassessing the Role of Marie Bonaparte in the History of Psychoanalysis in France,” Three Societies Conference (British Society for the History of Science, U.S. History of Science Society, Canadian Society for the History and Philosophy of Science), Oxford, England, July, 2008.


National Endowment for the Humanities Summer Institute, “The Centrality of Translation to the Humanities: New Interdisciplinary Scholarship,” July, 2013, University of Illinois.

The Arizona Humanities Council, Fall, 2007-Spring, 2008. 
I facilitated a six-month seminar entitled “Literature and Medicine” for approximately 15 health care providers (physicians, nurse, midwife, social worker, physical therapist, administrators) in Flagstaff affiliated with agencies including North Country Health Care, the Flagstaff Medical Center, the Taylor House, and Native Americans Community Action.

Recent professional service 


History Department Committees, Women’s and Gender Studies Steering Committee, Honors Program Advisory Committee, Interdisciplinary Health Policy Institute, University Library Committee, Graduate Council, University Program Review Committee, Office for Teaching and Learning Effectiveness Advisory Committee.


Executive Board Member and Founders’ Dissertation Fellowship Committee Chair of the Western Association of Women Historians; Program Committee and Panel Chair, Society for French Historical Studies; Reviewer for Routledge Press, The American Historical Review, The Journal of Women’s History, Left History, Canadian Journal of History, The Bulletin of the History of Medicine,Social History of Medicine, Journal of the History of Medicine and Allied Sciences, Journal of Social History, Journal of Interdisciplinary History, Technology and Culture.