Fighting for Life

Fighting for LifeNew York S Lower East Side Was Said To Be The Most Densely Populated Square Mile On Earth In The S Health Inspectors Called The Neighborhood The Suicide Ward Diarrhea Epidemics Raged Each Summer, Killing Thousands Of Children Sweatshop Babies With Smallpox And Typhus Dozed In Garment Heaps Destined For Fashionable Shops Desperate Mothers Paced The Streets To Soothe Their Feverish Children And White Mourning Cloths Hung From Every Building A Third Of The Children Living There Died Before Their Fifth Birthday By , The Child Death Rate Had Fallen Sharply And The New York Times Hailed The City As The Healthiest On Earth In This Witty And Highly Personal Autobiography, Public Health Crusader Dr S Josephine Baker Explains How This Transformation Was Achieved By The Time She Retired In , Baker Was Famous Worldwide For Saving The Lives Of , Children The Programs She Developed, Many Still In Use Today, Have Saved The Lives Of Millions She Fought For Women S Suffrage, Toured Russia In The S, And Captured Typhoid Mary Mallon, Twice She Was Also An Astute Observer Of Her Times, And Fighting For Life Is One Of The Most Honest, Compassionate Memoirs Of American Medicine Ever Written

Sara Josephine Baker November 15, 1873 February 22, 1945 was an American physician notable for making contributions to public health, especially in New York City from Wikipedia

➻ [Reading] ➽ Fighting for Life By S. Josephine Baker ➰ –
  • Unknown Binding
  • 264 pages
  • Fighting for Life
  • S. Josephine Baker
  • English
  • 02 January 2018
  • 9780405059452

10 thoughts on “Fighting for Life

  1. says:

    I finally have the answer to the question what famous person do you most wish you could have met Hands down Dr Josephine Baker

  2. says:

    NYRB has published this memoir of Josephine Baker, an American doctor who got sidelined into public health and made a phenomenal difference in child health in New York City She worked with poor immigrant babies, mothers, and school children, and radically changed the approach to child health by focusing on prevention rather than treatment.Baker was a radical pioneer, although she disclaims the role She lost her father just as she reached college age, and instead of attending Vassar as planned entered a medical school in New York City that had been started by Elizabeth Blackwell and her sister to train women physicians Baker also quietly states that she lived with another woman doctor her whole life, leaving the 1939 reader to draw conclusions She ingeniously inveigled male doctors to work for her when she was appointed head of the child health division of the city health department, and wangled funding from the city and private foundations time after time She repeatedly emphasizes her practical, experimental approach to solving problems, working with the population she had rather than wishing for a perfect, rational, obedient clientele Toward the end of the book Baker describes her role in the suffrage movement, and a trip she took to the Soviet Union in the mid thirties There are also wonderful anecdotes throughout, including visits from Lord Astor and Theodore Roosevelt.In all cases she is funny, forthright, and honest No sentimental attitudes toward the poor they have their faults An even handed assessment of the Soviet Union Scathing treatment of political concern for children as often just insuring there will be enough canon fodder for the next war And yet she is not at all sure that there is a higher purpose in having children, in the end She thinks she would have been just as happy doing an extremely good job of managing any big operation with a challenging assignment There are many insights and conclusions that are just as true and pointed now as when she wrote on speaking with the commissioner of health regarding closing schools during a WWI measles epidemic And as I was leaving the room, he casually added, By the way, I am changing the name of German measles Hereafter it will be known as Liberty measles And it did bear that extraordinary title for the duration of the war War psychosis is a fearful and wonderful disrupter of horse sense But any large body of people grouped by common interests will never behave wiht a tenth the intelligence that its individudal members will show in their daily lives That is true of nations, street corner gangs, prayer meetings and large groups of doctors.

  3. says:

    An excellent memoir by a founder of child hygiene practices that brought about a stunning drop in early 20th century child mortalities rates, often using methods of child care and nutrition that are taken for granted as natural today Baker was also prominent in the Woman s Suffrage Movement as it moved the country toward granting women the right to vote with the hopes that further positive changes could be brought about namely, establishing child labor laws once that voting bloc was established Alas, she was disappointed that the movement lost its momentum once voting rights were granted All in all, this memoir is cast in the voice of a friendly yet no nonsense role model, deeply aware as the point guard for women in leadership positions everywhere she was once of the nation s first women to graduate from medical school, to earn a doctorate in public health, to lead a government office, etc.

  4. says:

    This is one of the best memoirs I ve ever read I read about this book after watching the tv show The Knick If you are in medicine, public health, a New Yorker or interested in learning about a fascinating woman.this book is for you Dr.Baker was a pioneer and a amazing woman who is responsible for promoting midwives, baby health, school nurses and so much that we often take for granted She achieved so much during a time when men blocked her at every turn She even chased and tracked down Typhoid Mary to prevent her from infecting the public A lot of what she writes still rings true today.

  5. says:

    By the time she retired in 1923, Dr Baker s public health programs had saved the lives of 90,000 NYC children The bald facts of her life make for an interesting narrative, what with her Poughkeepsie childhood, her two captures of Typhoid Mary, her day with Teddy Roosevelt, and her 1930s tour of the Soviet Union But the woman could write, too She wasn t shy about her accomplishments, and her creativity and mettle are in full force on every page.

  6. says:

    Everyone should know about Dr Baker, one of the first women doctors who saved thousands of babies through her child health programs and established practices that are so standard now that it s hard to believe that someone initiated them I loved her great practical spirit and her views were so modern We could use her leadership now.

  7. says:

    I confess, I was inspired to read this autobiography of an inspirational woman who transformed American public health because of

  8. says:

    This is the fascinating autobiography of Dr Josephine Baker, one of the first women to become a doctor in America, a trailblazer in the field of public health and children s welfare, and an all around awesome person.Dr Baker became famous for her work with poor immigrant children in early 1900s New York Rather than try to futilely treat all the thousands of children who got sick with communicable diseases in the slums each year, Dr Baker decided to try a different approach teaching mothers how to properly feed and clean their babies so that they wouldn t get sick in the first place Incredible as it may seem, the concept of preventive medicine keeping well people well didn t exist yet, and Dr Baker had a hard time convincing the city to fund health care for people who weren t even sick But her efforts paid off By teaching mothers about seemingly simple things that most of us take for granted don t give your baby beer, don t let them play in the gutter, give them regular baths, make sure they drink pasteurized milk, etc , Dr Baker was able to save the lives of tens of thousands of children who otherwise would have died from diseases like dysentery and helped to permanently lower the infant mortality rate in New York City She also invented an infant formula that was one of the only safe feeding options for non breastfeeding mothers, routed out all the unqualified midwives in the city, which helped decrease deaths of women during childbirth, and created a school based health system that still exists today in which nurses were placed in public schools She also encouraged mothers to interact with their babies, which sounds incredible today, but which was not a common practice at the time It was believed that too much mothering would stunt the child s psychological growth and discourage independence Dr Baker showed that, on the contrary, children need love to develop normally Once again, her greatest breakthroughs were things that we now consider common sense but which really shook up the status quo during her time.As though that weren t impressive enough, Dr Baker did all of this while grappling with corrupt Tammany Hall bosses, facing down sexism and corruption in the department of health, and countering the objections of traditional doctors who argued that if Dr Baker went around preventing people from getting sick, the doctors would be out of a job.Dr Baker was also a major player in the fight for women s right to vote She visited the Soviet Union and commented on the state of their medical system, met Teddy Roosevelt and gave him a personal tour of her work in the city, helped catch Typhoid Mary, and lived an unconventional life driving a car, living with her female partner not getting married, wearing a man s suit and tie rather than a dress at a time when it was socially dangerous to do so.Dr Baker s autobiogrphy is funny, direct, and endlessly interesting She was not only a great doctor, but really thought about and understood the role of medicine in the world and what it means to be a doctor She describes her life and career against the backdrop of World War I, the Spanish flu epidemic, changing immigration laws, the Soviet Union, the women s suffrage movement, the polio epidemic, the invention of the automobile, and changing standards in science and medicine The end of the book even contains her reflections about the feasibility and desirability of state sponsored health care, which is still relevant 100 years later in light of the debates about the Affordable Care Act It s a fascinating story about an impressive woman who lived during an exciting time It s a shame that Dr Baker isn t well known and studied by children in school I think her story has much to offer than the women heroes that typically crop up in school, like Amelia Earhart or Martha Washington Dr Baker was humble, fearless, skeptical, stubborn, hard working, and compassionate, many of the qualities I admire most She helped advance the cause not just of women in medicine, but women in any kind of professional career, and for that reason alone, people should learn about her.

  9. says:

    I think the best word to describe Fighting for Life is enlightening Sara Josephine Baker is one of those influential historical figures who was responsible for creating or contributing to so many things that we consider normative now Having nurses in public schools Using state medicine to prevent illnesses Articulating that children s health care needs to begin at the prenatal stage We have Dr Baker to thank for these and many other innovations Oh, and she also tracked down Typhoid Mary, was a suffragist, and actively campaigned to eliminate child labor I think one of my favorite aspects of Baker s autobiography is her down to earth attitude towards such an impressive life s work The tone of Fighting for Life is inherently reflective of Baker s essential pragmatism When she was first getting involved in child health care reform, she tackled the issues with clear headed intelligence, and then had the patience and determination to see her ideas through The story doesn t read like a fairy tale or series of charmed events There s no glamorous turning point in her saga no romantic conviction driving her work She believed in making life better for children, and set out to do just that without much fanfare It s the relentless determination that lead to her successes I like that the work was enough for her It s great to be reminded that a noble pursuit doesn t require maudlin digressions or justifications.Fighting for Life accomplishes several things simultaneously while it gives an overview of how public health was revolutionized at the turn of the century, it also offers an interesting perspective on the various milestones of women s rights in America the founding of Vassar, women being admitted into medical colleges, getting the right to vote, etc Baker s own influence on women s rights is impressive her persistent challenges to patriarchy are a delight to read about, especially considering her markedly un dramatic approach Time and again, it seems like she simply states the obvious and then waits for others to see it from her point of view or make total fools of themselves In my opinion, that pattern depicts genuine self possessed power in action.Considering Fighting for Life was written in 1939, it feels very relevant to contemporary discourse on public medicine and health There are also dated and archaic moments, though Even when I disagreed with Baker s perspective on something, I couldn t help but admire her As an example of a pioneer and activist, she s a formidable presence.

  10. says:

    First of all, Sara Josephine Baker lived an incredible life Second of all, she has a totally relatable way of sharing her story Originally published in 1939, this autobiography tells firsthand the story of a woman doctor at a time when that brought strange looks who engineered the saving of thousands of infant lives in New York City slums at the turn of the century and became the first woman to earn a Doctor of Public Health through the program at NYU because, when she was asked to lecture in the program that only accepted men, she refused to do so unless she could also enroll for the degree, opening the door for other women to enroll as well.I originally read an excerpted version of her memoir in Written by Herself Autobiographies of American Women highly recommend I enjoyed the excerpted version so much, that I almost immediately ordered her book.The beginning takes a little while to get into, but soon enough, you re following her to New York as she enrolls in medical school and later sets up her own practice with a fellow woman doctor and then gets involved with preventive public health and on and on it goes, as she steps into different roles and situations and seeks to fill the gaps she finds.Baker has a no nonsense style to her writing Don t come to this book seeking lyrical prose or a literary masterpiece Her writing flows, as if she s sitting and talking with you, recounting her life I learned a ton about her, her work, and the world as it was back then think, women s suffrage, little mothers, Soviet Russia oh, and baby care.I thoroughly enjoyed this book and recommend it to anyone who enjoys learning, values the work of women in the world, and is curious about history.

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