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Mary Augusta Brazelton

University Lecturer in Global Studies of Science, Technology and Medicine

I am a University Lecturer in Global Studies of Science, Technology and Medicine. My current book project, Immune Systems: Mass Vaccination and the Making of Modern Chinese Citizens, examines the history of mass vaccination in modern China. My research interests lie broadly in historical intersections of clinical medicine, the life sciences and public health, in China and around the world. I received my PhD in History from Yale and have taught at Tufts University. At Cambridge, I am also an affiliated lecturer in East Asian Studies at the Faculty of Asian and Middle Eastern Studies and an associate member of the World History Subject Group in the History Faculty, as well as a Research Fellow of the Needham Research Institute. I am a Fellow and Director of Studies in HPS at Lucy Cavendish College, as well as Director of Studies in HPS at St Catharine's College. Potential students may get in touch by emailing mab94 at cam dot ac dot uk.

I also organize a Manchu language study group, which meets regularly for text-reading sessions during term.

I am on sabbatical leave in Easter 2019.

Research interests

Global studies of science and medicine; history of medicine and the life sciences in modern China; 20th-century biomedicine; history of international and global health.


'Western Medical Education on Trial: The Endurance of Peking Union Medical College, 1949–1960', Twentieth-Century China 40 (2015): 126–145.

Chinese translation: "放归国有之后的北京协和医学院,” in 《协和百年纪念文集》(The Legacy of PUMC: Centennial Essays), ed. Jiang Yuhong 蒋育红 and Mary Brown Bullock, 326-41. Beijing: Zhongguo xiehe yike daxue chubanshe, 2017.


Review of Red Revolution, Green Revolution: Scientific Farming in Socialist China by Sigrid Schmalzer, Journal of Asian Studies 76, no. 4 (2017): 4-5.

Review of Historical Epistemology and the Making of Modern Chinese Medicine edited by Howard Chiang, Isis 107, no. 4 (2016): 819-20.

Review of Farewell to the God of Plague: Chairman Mao's Campaign to Deworm China by Miriam Gross, East Asian Science, Technology, and Society 10 (2016): 1-4.

Review of Saving Lives in Wartime China: How Medical Reformers Built Modern Healthcare Systems Amid War and Epidemics, 1928–1945 by John Robertson Watt, Asian Medicine: Tradition and Modernity 8 (2015): 491–493.

Review of Barefoot Doctors and Western Medicine in China by Fang Xiaoping, Journal of the History of Medicine and Allied Sciences 69 (2014): 343–345.


"Beyond Brainwashing: Propaganda, Public Health, and Chinese Allegations of Germ Warfare in Manchuria," post on Hidden Persuaders Project, Birkbeck, University of London, 21 November 2016.

Recording of a recent talk at London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine’s Centre for History in Public Health: < immunity-mass-vaccination-modern-china-east-asia-1945-75/>