Holly Tucker holds appointments as Professor in the Department of French & Italian (College of Arts & Science) and in the Center for Biomedical Ethics & Society (School of Medicine). She also a recipient of Vanderbilt’s Chancellor’s Award for Research and is currently completing a MPH in Global Health at Vanderbilt.
Her teaching interests include: narrative medicine, medicine and literature, early history of medicine, and early-modern culture and history. She also works closely with colleagues across the Vanderbilt campus to build bridges between the humanities and the Medical School. A recent example of this work is the exhibition she co-curated, Memento Mori: Looking at Death in Art and Illustration (spring 2015).
Tucker is author of Blood Work: A Tale of Medicine & Murder in the Scientific Revolution and Pregnant Fictions: Childbirth & the Fairy Tale in Early-Modern France. Her next book (City of Light, City of Poison) will be published by W.W. Norton in early 2017.
Across her research, Professor Tucker is deeply interested in what lessons the history of medicine holds for our own day. Blood Work placed social fears surrounding the history of blood transfusion in the context of modern debates on stem cell research. Pregnant Fictions showed how public reception of biomedical innovation embeds itself in contemporary literary production and provides insights into ongoing dialogues between science and society. City of Light, City of Poison asks how far science can and should go when it comes to solving intractable crimes–not only in the 17th century, but also in our own era.
Blood Work was a Los Angeles Times Book Prize Finalist in Science and Technology. The book was also named a Best Book of 2011 by the Times Literary Supplement and the Seattle Times as well as garnering Honorable Mention in the general nonfiction category from the American Society of Journalists and Authors. The book was published in Japan, China, and Taiwan–where it won the China Times Book Award (Taiwan).