A wide-ranging exploration of the cultural history of mouths, teeth, and dentistry drawing on literature, philosophy, and film.

Trips to the dentist are as predictable as they are unpleasant, but we rarely reflect on the impact of dentistry on domains of social knowledge and action, nor on how our teeth shape who we are as subjects. In the academic history of science and medicine, dentistry has received short shrift. This mini-course shines new light on this ignored topic and its oft-maligned professions, exploring representations of teeth in literature, mythology, and film, as well as reflecting on the history of dentistry as a specialized body of knowledge. How has oral pain influenced art? How did the mouth become a separate part of the body? Why is dental insurance typically separate from health insurance? How do ways of caring for teeth maintain social inequality? We will explore these and other questions over the course of six two-hour classes.

Mini-Course by Brad Bolman

Dates: January 14 — 25, MWF; 10:00 a.m. — 12:30 p.m.

Sign up: Here.