Lecture Series: ‘War Surgery 1914-18’ writers Tom Scotland and Steven Heys

war_surgery_front_coverTom Scotland and Steven Heys: “Our first book, ‘War Surgery 1914-18’, has Pestilencebeen an important factor in helping us to become established as medical military historians – while our second publication, ‘Wars, Pestilence and the Surgeon`s Blade’, has reinforced our position in this context.

‘Now that the centenary of the outbreak of the Great War is nearly upon us, we have been very busy and have received invitations to speak at many events during 2014 – including at the University of Sheffield.

‘Tom has been asked to be guest lecturer at the Sir Richard Owen Memorial Lecture at the University of Lancaster and to be the Goodall Memorial Lecturer at the Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Glasgow.

2015 is shaping up to be even busier!”

Edinburgh College 2015 Lecture Series

Tom has been invited to be Guest Lecturer at the History of Surgery Section of the Royal Australasian College of Surgeons in Perth, Western Australia at a joint meeting with the Royal College of Surgeons of Edinburgh.

We are both helping to organise a series of lectures at the Edinburgh College – commencing in June 2015 – to commemorate both the 200th anniversary of the Battle of Waterloo and the centenary of the Great War, which build upon the content of ‘War Surgery 1914-18’.

The presentations deal principally with the evolution of the evacuation pathway on the Western Front. This includes the developments of orthopaedic surgery as a specialty in its own right and the evolution of the management of abdominal wounds from “Laissez faire” to early surgical intervention.

Anyone with a general interest in the history of warfare will enjoy these non-surgical lectures; you don’t have to be a healthcare professional. There are strategically positioned recitations of war poetry to illustrate and emphasise particular points being made.

‘Nutrition in Warfare’

Steve has been busy organising an online distance learning programme using the general theme of ‘Nutrition in Warfare’ to commemorate the outbreak of the Great War. Focusing on the nutrition of those who fought and those who remained at home, he examines the impact of the war on rural life and the role nutrition played in the winning and losing of the war. Tom has helped him with this task, which Steve hopes to launch on 4 August 2014 – giving the University a fitting way to commemorate the outbreak of the war. It will be a series of short videos linked to PowerPoint presentations to convey the material to prospective students.

Ann’s Anaesthesia Success

Ann Robertson, who wrote chapters on the development of military anaesthesia in both our publications, has achieved recognition as a historian of military anaesthesia. Ann has been asked to speak at a meeting of the College of Anaesthetists and also to the Association of Anaesthetists on the subjects of ‘Anaesthesia during the Great War’ and ‘The Understanding of Shock in the Great War’ respectively.

In Summary

‘War Surgery 1914-18’ has been a great ‘launchpad’ which has helped to propel us into new areas and to meet many different people linked by their fascination for history.

List of Forthcoming Events

25 June 2014: Lecture at the University of Sheffield in association with Sheffield University Heritage Medical Exhibition: ‘Casualties British Expeditionary Force in France and Flanders 1914-1918’.

24 July 2014: Lecture at the University of Sheffield in association with Sheffield University Heritage Medical Exhibition: ‘Management of Abdominal Wounds during the Great War’.

4 September 2014 (afternoon): Lecture at Nairn Book Festival: ‘Casualties British Expeditionary Force in France and Flanders 1914-1918’.

4 September 2014 (evening): Lecture at Fort George (Highlanders Museum): ‘Casualties British Expeditionary Force in France and Flanders 1914-1918’.

13 October 2014: TRS is Goodall Memorial Lecturer at the Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons, Glasgow. Title to be confirmed.

27 October 2014: Lecture at the University of Lancaster: ‘Casualties British Expeditionary Force in France and Flanders 1914-1918’.

6 November 2014: Three lectures to Burgesses City of Aberdeen, including the Battle of Loos; plastic surgery during the Great War and the last 100 days of the Great War.

7 November 2014: Armistice Lecture at the University of Aberdeen: ‘Death of Innocence’ – three intertwined narratives dealing with the tragic outcome for soldiers from different backgrounds linked by narrative and poetry from the Great War.

21 November 2014: Dr Ann Robertson (who contributed a chapter on anaesthesia to ‘War Surgery 1914-18’) will talk at the College of Anaesthetists on anaesthesia in the Great War.

25 November 2014: Dr Ann Robertson will speak to the Association of Anaesthetists at a symposium on military anaesthesia on the subject of the understanding of shock in the Great War.

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