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Release: April 18, 2002  

Visiting historian of public health to speak at UI April 22-26           

David Rosner, Ph.D., professor of history and public health and director of the Center for the History and Ethics of Public Health at Columbia University and the Mailman School of Public Health, will visit the University of Iowa April 22-26 as an Ida Beam Distinguished Visiting Professor.

An outstanding historian with a national reputation in a wide range of areas, Rosner has published eight books on the history of health care, the history of public health and on race and mental health. While at the UI, Rosner will give several public lectures and seminars, all of which are free and open to the public.

            -- "When Does a Worker's Death Become a Murder?" This lecture will be held from 4 to
5 p.m. Monday, April 22 in the auditorium at the Levitt Center for University Advancement. Rosner will discuss the growing number of manslaughter and even murder charges that have been brought against employers in cases involving the death of workers on the job. He also will review other periods in American history when workers' deaths were considered a form of homicide. The talk will include an examination of the social forces that shape how we define a worker's death: as an accidental, chance occurrence or as a predictable result of gross, criminal indifference to human life. This lecture is sponsored by the UI College of Law.

            -- "Cater to the Children? The Lead Industry and the Making of a National Public Health Tragedy" will take place from 4 to 5 p.m., Tuesday, April 23 at the Institute for Rural and Environmental Health (Oakdale Campus), Room 123. This seminar will discuss the impact of occupational and environmental illnesses caused by lead in paint and gasoline and its relation to the evolution of the American consumer culture. The event is sponsored by the department of occupational and environmental health in the UI College of Public Health.

            -- "Children, Race and Power" will be presented at 2 p.m., Wednesday, April 24 at 332 North Hall. This talk, sponsored by the School of Social Work, will address the issues of race, mental health and social work in New York in the years after World War II, focusing on the work of

Kenneth and Mamie Clark and the influence of the Northside Center, a mental health facility in Harlem.

            -- "Between Factory and Home: the Shifting Borders Between Occupational and Environmental Health" begins at 2:30 p.m., Friday, April 26 in the Seebohm Conference Room, 283 Eckstein Medical Research Building. Based on a forthcoming book by the same name as the lecture title, this talk will explore the social and political background of the various ways that Americans approach occupational and environmental health problems. This talk will be sponsored by the UI College of Public Health.

            In addition, Rosner will be a guest on the "Iowa Talks" radio show at 10 a.m., Monday, April 22 on WSUI (AM 910).

            Rosner received a master's of science degree in public health from the University of Massachusetts and his doctorate in the history of science from Harvard University. Until recently, he was University Distinguished Professor of History at the City University of New York.

            In addition to receiving numerous grants, Rosner has been a Guggenheim Fellow, a National Endowment for the Humanities Fellow and a Josiah Macy Fellow. He has been awarded the Distinguished Scholar's Prize from the City University, the Distinguished Alumni Award from the University of Massachusetts and, recently, the Viseltear Prize for Outstanding Work in the History of Public Health from the American Public Health Association.

            Rosner's activities at the UI are supported by the Ida Cordelia Beam Distinguished Visiting Professorships Program, which brings outstanding scholars to the UI campus for residencies ranging from a few days to an entire academic year.

            A native of Vinton, Iowa, Beam willed her farm to the UI in 1977. Proceeds from the sale of the farm were used to establish the visiting professorships program in her name. Since 1977, hundreds of eminent scholars and scientists have visited the UI campus to give public lectures and to meet with students and faculty.

            Other UI sponsors for Rosner's visit are the College of Public Health, the College of Law, the School of Social Work, the UI department of history, the Labor Center, the Heartland Center for Occupational Health and Safety, the Environmental Health Sciences Research Center, and the Center for Global and Regional Environmental Research.

            For more information, contact Leslie Loveless at (319) 335-4436.