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Discover the history of health and medicine

History: Medical and Health Humanities

Learn to situate medical knowledge in its historical context

History: Medical and Health Humanities is a unique interdisciplinary specialisation that is taught in English. You will combine the history of health and medicine with a wide array of approaches in the arts and humanities.

The courses are relevant for students interested in the history of health and medicine, as well as for health professionals. You follow de the full master’s programme History, but the three courses ‘Introduction to Medical and Health Humanities’ (period 2-3), ‘Knowing by Sensing’ (period 4) and ‘Objects of Knowledge’ (period 4) are also available as: Extra curricular course for VU students or Secondary subject for non-VU students or Part of an Exchange Programme

Not a student?
People who are not enrolled in a Dutch university, but who would like to register for the specialisation courses of Medical and Health Humanities, can contact the coordinators: Ab Flipse ( and Manon Parry (

Medical and Health Humanities is one of the tracks of the master's programme History. Find more information about the other tracks here.

Discover your programme Medical and Health Humanities

In the courses on offer, you will explore the different ways that bodies and minds have been studied and understood, and how these various ways of knowing continue to shape everyday life, medical practice and public health policy. 

Your courses will be taught by top scholars from universities across the country, as well as by professionals who are involved in medical history in other contexts, including museums and websites.

Explore the programme content