Holly Tucker is Professor of French Studies (Arts & Science) and Professor of Biomedical Ethics & Society (School of Medicine). She also a recipient of Vanderbilt’s coveted Chancellor’s Award for Research.
Her teaching interests include: narrative medicine, medicine and literature, early history of medicine, and early-modern French culture and history.
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) is under contract with W.W. Norton.
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. It is also being translated for publication in Japan, China, and Taiwan.
In addition to her books and academic articles, Tucker’s writing also has appeared in the Wall Street Journal, the New Scientist, Scientific American online, the Christian Science Monitor, and the San Francisco Chronicle.