The Black Doctors of Colonial Lima by José R. Jouve-Martín
The untold story of Lima’s black physicians and their role in shaping the practice of medicine in Peru.
In this groundbreaking study on the intersection of race, science, and politics in colonial Latin American, José Jouve Martín explores the reasons why the city of Lima, in the decades that preceded the wars of independence in Peru, became dependent on a large number of bloodletters, surgeons, and doctors of African descent.
The Black Doctors of Colonial Lima focuses on the lives and fortunes of three of the most distinguished among this group of black physicians: José Pastor de Larrinaga, a surgeon of controversial medical ideas who passionately defended the right of scientific learning for Afro-Peruvians; José Manuel Dávalos, a doctor who studied medicine at the University of Montpellier and played a key role in the smallpox vaccination campaigns in Peru; and José Manuel Valdés, a multifaceted writer who became the first and only person of black ancestry to become a chief medical officer in Spanish America.
By carefully documenting their actions and writings, The Black Doctors of Colonial Lima illustrates how medicine and its related fields became areas in which the descendants of slaves found opportunities for social and political advancement, and a platform from which to engage in provocative dialogue with Enlightenment thought and social revolution.
This book is part of the McGill-Queen’s/Associated Medical Services Studies in the History of Medicine, Health, and Society (number 41 in series).
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