Staff Profile:Dr Hannah Newton
- Dr Hannah Newton
- Job Title:
- Lecturer (Wellcome Trust Award)
Examinations Officer for Part 2 and 3
Lecturer of the Part 2 module Cradle to Coffin: Living and Dying in Early Modern England; contributor to team-taught modules, Journeys through History (Part 1) and Historical Approaches and My Dissertation (Part 2); supervisor of Part 3 dissertation students on early modern history (recent dissertations include, 'The Vices of Young Men in Early Modern England', 'Men's Grief in Early modern England', and 'Lovesickness in Early Modern England').
Lecturer for the MA(Res) in History, including an option module on early modern emotions.
- Areas of Interest:
I'm a social and cultural historian of early modern England, specialising in the histories of medicine, emotions, and childhood. I undertook an MA and PhD in Medical History at the University of Exeter in 2005-2009, sponsored by the Wellcome Trust. My thesis formed the basis of a book, The Sick Child in Early Modern England, 1580-1720, published in 2012 by Oxford University Press. It examines medical perceptions and treatments of children's diseases, and explores the emotional and spiritual experiences of sick children and their parents. The Sick Child has been awarded the European Association for the History of Medicine and Health 2015 Book Award, and was short-listed for the Longman History Today 2013 Book Prize.
After completing The Sick Child, I took up a Wellcome Trust Medical Humanities Fellowship at the University of Cambridge (2011-2014), and researched for my second monograph, Misery to Mirth: Recovery from Illness in Early Modern England (under contract, OUP). This book asks how recovery was defined and explained, and investigates the personal experiences of recovering patients and their relatives. It also explores the medical care provided to convalescents. The aim of the study is to rebalance and brighten our picture of early modern health, which hitherto has focused almost exclusively on the gloomy subjects of disease and death. During my time at Cambridge, I was also Director of Studies for the History and Philosophy of Science Department at St John's College, and occasional lecturer for the History Department.
Based at the University of Reading since 2014, I have now taken up a five-year Wellcome Trust University Award (2016-2021), to embark on a new book project, Sensing Sickness in Early Modern England. Taking the dual perspectives of patients and their loved ones, I am exploring the sounds, sights, smells, tastes, and tactile sensations of the early modern sickchamber. The ultimate goal is to reach a closer understanding of what it was like to be ill, or to witness the illness of others, in early modern England. The project includes an element of public engagement: a series of interactive workshops for children. Entitled 'Inside the Sickchamber', 7-10-year-olds will use their five senses to investigate the history of medicine.
- Research groups / Centres:
Committee Member and Conference Convenor for the Social History and Society; Fellow of the Royal Historical Society; Member of the Social History for the Society of Medicine.
YNumber of items: 7.
- Newton, H. (2017) ‘Rapt up with joy’: children’s emotional responses to death in early modern England. In: Barclay, K., Reynolds, K. and Rawnsley, C. (eds.) Death, emotion and childhood in premodern Europe. Palgrave Macmillan, London, pp. 87-107. ISBN 9781137571984
- Newton, H. (2016) Holy affections. In: Early modern emotions: an introduction. Routledge, London, pp. 67-70. ISBN 9781138925748 (In Press)
- Newton, H. (2015) 'Nature concocts & expels': the agents and processes of recovery from disease in Early Modern England. Social History of Medicine, 28 (3). 465-486 . ISSN 1477-4666 doi: 10.1093/shm/hkv022
- Newton, H. (2015) The dying child in seventeenth-century England. Pediatrics, 136 (2). pp. 218-220. ISSN 1098-4275 doi: 10.1542/peds.2015-0971
- Newton, H. (2012) The Sick Child in Early Modern England, 1580-1720. Oxford University Press, Oxford, pp262. ISBN 9780199650491
- Newton, H. (2011) “Very sore nights and days”: the child’s experience of illness in early modern England, c. 1580-1720. Medical History, 55 (2). pp. 153-182. ISSN 2048-8343 doi: 10.1017/S0025727300005743
- Newton, H. (2010) Children’s physic: medical perceptions and treatment of sick children in early modern England, c. 1580-1720. Social History of Medicine, 23 (3). pp. 456-474. ISSN 1477-4666 doi: 10.1093/shm/hkq006