A group of young women from a number of local schools recently attended ‘The Body in History’ summer school, run by the Wellcome Library and UCL Museums and Collections.
During the week , students experienced a range of activites exploring the human body from scientific, historical, ethical and artistic viewpoints. These included:
- an osteoarchaeology session with staff and specimens from the Museum of London
- a demonstration of Renaissance surgery – complete with leeches and ‘wound’ make-up
- a visit to the Medicine Man gallery in Wellcome Collection
- crash course in the history of anatomy, drawing on the resources of the Wellcome Library, followed by an animation workshop at the South Camden City Learning Centre
- comparative anatomy and the secrets of digestion at the Grant Museum
- an exploration of ethical issues surrounding transplants, DNA and truth in medicine
- talks about reading faces, and about perception and the brain
- a visit to the Hunterian Museum at the Royal College of Surgeons – including a surgical skills workshop
- an anatomical art session
The animation below is one of four created in one day by the students. This group were particularly interested in Van Leeuwenhoek’s discovery of sperm and his theory about miniature babies being ready-formed within each, ready to be transplanted into the mother.