Jennifer Gunn

Associate Professor

Director of Institute for Advanced Study

History of Medicine

510 Diehl Hall

+1 612 624 1909


19th and 20th century US History of Medicine and Public Health, Rural History or Rural Studies, History of Social Sciences

I am a historian of 19th- and 20th-century medicine, interested in the historical intersections of health, medicine, biology, social sciences, institutions, and public policy. Integrative approaches have been central to my education: I earned my B.A. from Hampshire College and my M.A. and Ph.D. in History and Sociology of Science at the University of Pennsylvania (1997). I am working on a book that addresses the significance of place and practice in American medicine by exploring the history of rural health and medical practice in the Upper Midwest, 1900-1950. In addition, I have done extensive research on the history of population studies and demography in the interwar period, and on the history of philanthropy. The University of Minnesota offers a wealth of opportunities for cross-disciplinary collaboration. In the Academic Health Center (AHC), I have been involved with initiatives around interprofessional, community-based education, and in developing a history of the AHC. In the larger university, I am working with faculty in History of Science and Technology, History, Anthropology, Global Studies, and Gender, Women, and Sexuality Studies on projects related to health, biomedicine, global philanthropy, environment, and social issues.

Selected Publications
"Compromising Positions: A story of early 20th century occupational medicine on Minnesota’s Iron Range." Minnesota Medicine 90 (2007): 34-39.

"Introduction: Epidemics, History, and the Present." Historical Geography 34 (2006): 7-13. Edited special issue with Susan Craddock.

"A Few Good Men: the Rockefellers and Population Studies." Pp. 97-114 in The Development of the Social Sciences in the U.S. and Canada: the Role of Philanthropy, eds. Theresa Richardson and Donald Fisher (Stamford, CT: Ablex Publishing, 1999).

"Factory Work for Doctors: The Early Years of the Section on Industrial Medicine and Public Health of the College of Physicians of Philadelphia." Transactions and Studies of the College of Physicians of Philadelphia Series V 17 (1995): 61-93.