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Allan M. Brandt, PhD

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Allan M. Brandt, PhD

Contact Information

Department of Social Medicine
Harvard Medical School
651 Huntington Avenue, 6th floor
Boston, MA 02115
Phone: 617-432-4365
Fax: 617-432-3721
Email: brandt@fas.harvard.edu

Allan M. Brandt is the Amalie Moses Kass Professor of the History of Medicine at Harvard Medical School. He holds a joint appointment in the Department of the History of Science in the Faculty of Arts and Sciences at Harvard University where he is currently chair. In addition, he directs the MD/PhD program in the social sciences at the Harvard Medical School.

Brandt earned his undergraduate degree at Brandeis University and a Ph.D. in American History from Columbia University in 1983.

His work focuses on social and ethical aspects of health, disease, and medical practices in the twentieth century United States. Brandt is the author of No Magic Bullet: A Social History of Venereal Disease in the United States since 1880 (1987); and the editor of Morality and Health (1997). He has written on the social history of epidemic disease; the history of public health and health policy; and the history of human subject research among other topics. He is currently completing a book on the social and cultural history of cigarette smoking in the U.S. In 1998, he was elected to the Institute of Medicine of the National Academy of Sciences, and in 2001 he was elected as a Fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Science. He was named a Dr. William Cahan Distinguished Professor by the Flight Attendants Medical Research Institute in 2003. In September 2004, he testified as an expert witness for the U.S. Department of Justice in U.S. v Philip Morris et al. The case, brought under civil RICO statues, is currently being tried in U.S. Federal District Court.

Research Interests

  • Social history of American medicine, science, and public health
  • Ethics and values in health care
  • History of human subject research
  • American social and political history

Current Projects

  • A social and cultural history of cigarette smoking in American life
  • Social and ethical issues relating to AIDS policy
  • Historical and social aspects of addictions: drug policy
  • Patient-Doctor relationships in historical context

Select Publications

  • No Magic Bullet: A Social History of Venereal Disease in the United States Since 1880, (New York: Oxford University Press, 1985; enlarged paperback edition, 1987).
  • Morality and Health: Interdisciplinary Perspectives, Allan M. Brandt and Paul Rozin, eds. (New York and London: Routledge, 1997).
  • Bioethics and Beyond. Daedalus. Fall 1999. (Co-edited with Arthur Kleinman and Renee Fox).
  • Brandt, AM. “Racism and Research: The Case of the Tuskegee Syphilis Study,” Hastings Center Report 8 (December 1978), pp. 21-29. Reprinted in Judith Walzer Leavitt and Ronald Numbers eds., Sickness and Health in America (Madison: University of Wisconsin Press, second ed., 1985), pp. 331-46.
  • Brandt, AM. “Emerging Themes in the History of Medicine,” Milbank Quarterly, 69 (November 2, 1991), pp. 199-214.
  • Brandt, AM. ‘Just Say No’: Risk, Behavior, and Disease in Twentieth Century America," in Science Authority and Twentieth Century America, Ronald G. Walters, ed., (Baltimore: Johns Hopkins University Press, 1997), pp. 82-98.
  • Brandt, AM. “Bioethics: Then and Now”, Lahey Clinic Medical Ethics Newsletter, Spring 2000.
  • Brandt, AM., Gardner, M. “Antagonism and Accommodation: Interpreting the Relationship Between Public Health and Medicine in the United States During the 20th Century,” American Journal of Public Health, Vol. 90, No. 5 (May 2000) pp. 707-715.
  • Brandt, AM. “The Culture of Consumer Confidence: Engineering Smoking in the Twentieth Century,” in Smoke: A Global History of Smoking, Sander L. Gilman and Xhou Zun, eds. (London: Reaktion Books, 2004).
  • Brandt, AM. “Difference and Diffusion: Cross-Cultural Perspectives on the Rise of Anti-Tobacco Policies,” in Unfiltered: Conflicts over Tobacco Policy and Health, Eric A. Feldman and Ronald Bayer, eds. (Cambridge: Harvard University Press, 2004).
  • Brandt, AM. “From Analysis to Advocacy: Crossing Boundaries as a Historian of Health Policy,” in Locating Medical History: the Stories and Their Meanings, Frank Huisman and John Harley Warner, eds. (Baltimore: Johns Hopkins University Press, 2004).