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Cleveland Humanities Festival: “Lady Mary’s Legacy: Vaccine Advocacy from The Turkish Embassy Letters to Video Games”

On April 1, 1717, Lady Mary Wortley Montagu wrote her famous “Letter to a Friend” from the Turkish Embassy, describing the process of smallpox inoculation. With that letter, she became one of the earliest vaccination advocates, joined over the next 300 years by celebrities and scientists, pop culture icons and heads of state, patients and game developers.

Lisa Rosner, Distinguished Professor of Historical Studies and director of the honors program at Stockton University, will mark the 300th anniversary of Lady Mary Wortley Montagu’s famous letter promoting smallpox inoculation with a talk as part of the Cleveland Humanities Festival.

Her talk will be held today (March 30) from 6 to 7 p.m. at the Dittrick Medical History Museum (Allen Memorial Medical Library).

Rosner will provide an update on the progress of her project, “The Pox Hunter,” a 3-D digital game presenting a key issue in the history of medicine: the interaction of disease entity, patient and healer in the introduction of vaccination as a public health technology.

This event is co-sponsored by the Dittrick Medical History Museum, Case Western Reserve University and the Baker-Nord Center for the Humanities.

It is free and open to the public. Registration is available online.