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Against Their Will

The Secret History Of Medical Experimentation On Children In Cold War America

By Allen M Hornblum

During the Cold War, an alliance between American scientists, pharmaceutical companies, and the US military pushed the medical establishment into ethically fraught territory. Doctors and scientists at prestigious institutions were pressured to produce medical advances to compete with the perceived threats coming from the Soviet Union. In Against Their Will, authors Allen Hornblum, Judith Newman, and Gregory Dober reveal the little-known history of unethical and dangerous medical experimentation on children in the United States.  Through rare interviews and the personal correspondence of renowned medical investigators, they document how children—both normal and those termed "feebleminded"—from infants to teenagers, became human research subjects in terrifying experiments. They were drafted as "volunteers" to test vaccines, doused with ringworm, subjected to electric shock, and given lobotomies. They were also fed radioactive isotopes and exposed to chemical warfare agents. This groundbreaking book shows how institutional superintendents influenced by eugenics often turned these children over to scientific researchers without a second thought. Based on years of archival work and numerous interviews with both scientific researchers and former test subjects, this is a fascinating and disturbing look at the dark underbelly of American medical history.  

Format

Book

Availability

Publish Date

2013

ISBN

9780230341715


Format: Book
Author: Hornblum, Allen M
Summary: "The sad history of young children, especially institutionalized children, being used as cheap and available test subjects - the raw material for experimentation - started long before the atomic age and went well beyond exposure to radioactive isotopes. Experimental vaccines for hepatitis, measles, polio and other diseases, exploratory therapeutic procedures such as electroshock and lobotomy, and untested pharmaceuticals such as curare and thorazine were all tested on young children in hospitals, orphanages, and mental asylums as if they were some widely accepted intermediary step between chimpanzees and humans. Occasionally, children supplanted the chimps. Bereft of legal status or protectors, institutionalized children were often the test subjects of choice for medical researchers hoping to discover a new vaccine, prove a new theory, or publish an article in a respected medical journal. Many took advantage of the opportunity. One would be hard-pressed to identify a researcher whose professional career was cut short because he incorporated week-old infants, ward-bound juvenile epileptics, or the profoundly retarded in his experiments. In short, involuntary, non-therapeutic, and dangerous experiments on children were far from an unusual or dishonorable endeavor during the last century"-- Provided by publisher.
Title: Against their will : the secret history of medical experimentation on children in cold war America / Allen M. Hornblum, Judith L. Newman, Gregory J. Dober.
Publisher Date: New York City : Palgrave Macmillan, 2013.
Subject: Pediatrics -- Research -- Moral and ethical aspects -- United States. Children -- Research -- Moral and ethical aspects -- United States. Human experimentation in medicine -- United States -- History -- 20th century.
Isbn: 9780230341715 (hardback) 0230341713 (hardback)
Current Holds: 0
System Items Available: 1
System Items Total: 1
Call Number: 174.29892 Hor
Oclc: 825196492
Upc:
Bib Id: 439499

Format: Book
Author: Hornblum, Allen M.
Summary: "The sad history of young children, especially institutionalized children, being used as cheap and available test subjects - the raw material for experimentation - started long before the atomic age and went well beyond exposure to radioactive isotopes. Experimental vaccines for hepatitis, measles, polio and other diseases, exploratory therapeutic procedures such as electroshock and lobotomy, and untested pharmaceuticals such as curare and thorazine were all tested on young children in hospitals, orphanages, and mental asylums as if they were some widely accepted intermediary step between chimpanzees and humans. Occasionally, children supplanted the chimps. Bereft of legal status or protectors, institutionalized children were often the test subjects of choice for medical researchers hoping to discover a new vaccine, prove a new theory, or publish an article in a respected medical journal. Many took advantage of the opportunity. One would be hard-pressed to identify a researcher whose professional career was cut short because he incorporated week-old infants, ward-bound juvenile epileptics, or the profoundly retarded in his experiments. In short, involuntary, non-therapeutic, and dangerous experiments on children were far from an unusual or dishonorable endeavor during the last century"-- Provided by publisher.
Title: Against their will : the secret history of medical experimentation on children in cold war America / Allen M. Hornblum, Judith L. Newman, Gregory J. Dober.
Publisher, Date: New York City : Palgrave Macmillan, 2013.
Description: x, 266 pages, 6 unnumbered pages of plates : illustrations ; 25 cm
Subjects: Pediatrics -- Research -- Moral and ethical aspects -- United States.
Subjects: Children -- Research -- Moral and ethical aspects -- United States.
Subjects: Human experimentation in medicine -- United States -- History -- 20th century.
Other Author: Newman, Judith L.
Other Author: Dober, Gregory J.
Notes: Includes bibliographical references (p. [249]-259) and index.
Contents: Introduction: "They'd come for you at night" -- The age of heroic medicine: "At their best, medical men are the highest type yet reached by mankind" -- Eugenics and the devaluing of institutionalized children: "The elimination of defectives" -- World War II, patriotism and the Nuremburg Code: "It was a good code for barbarians" -- Impact of the Cold War on human experimentation: "There weren't any guidelines as I can recall" -- Vaccines: "Institutions for hydrocephalics and other similar unfortunates" -- Skin, dietary, and dental studies: "The kids in these institutions are so desperate for affection" -- Radiation experiments on children: "The littlest dose of radiation possible" -- Psychological treatment: "Lobotomy...is often the starting point in effective treatment" -- Psychological abuse: "I call that brainwashing" -- Reproduction and sexuality experiments: "They treated those girls just as if they were cattle" -- Research misconduct: "Science actually encourages deceit"
LCCN: 2012051032
ISBN: 9780230341715 (hardback)
ISBN: 0230341713 (hardback)
Requests: 0
Available Copies: 1
Total Copies: 1
Call Number: 174.29892 Hor