The humane society movement and the transnational exchange of medical knowledge in the late eighteenth and early nineteenth centuries.

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Summary of "The humane society movement and the transnational exchange of medical knowledge in the late eighteenth and early nineteenth centuries."

Humane societies emerged in considerable numbers throughout the transatlantic world in the late eighteenth century. These charities promoted innovative methods for resuscitating the apparently drowned, drawing upon advances in the medical understanding of resuscitation and scientific innovations in life-saving techniques. Humane societies constituted a transnational philanthropic movement, in that member societies corresponded with each other and drew upon the work of fellow life-saving charities. Medical gentlemen, especially physicians and surgeons, were at the forefront of this movement and contributed greatly to the foundation of these societies, as well as to the vibrant transnational discourse on resuscitation techniques. This paper will explore the proliferation of humane societies as constituting a transnational movement of voluntary organisations, and will pay particular attention to British and Irish life-saving charities in the early decades of this movement (1770-c. 1820).


Journal Details

This article was published in the following journal.

Name: The journal of the Royal College of Physicians of Edinburgh
ISSN: 2042-8189
Pages: 158-164


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The state of society as it exists or in flux. While it usually refers to society as a whole in a specified geographical or political region, it is applicable also to restricted strata of a society.

Economic aspects of the field of medicine, the medical profession, and health care. It includes the economic and financial impact of disease in general on the patient, the physician, society, or government.

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Professional society representing the field of medicine.

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