Publications

The list of selected staff publications may be searched by keyword or author and can be sorted by year.

"Hard Wear and Soft Tissue: Craft and Commerce in Artificial Eyes," in Katherine Ott, David Serlin, Stephen Mihm, eds., Artificial Parts, Practical Lives; Modern Histories of Prosthetics (New York: New York University Press, 2002): 147-170.

Examines development of the making of artificial eyes in the nineteenth and twentieth centuries, including discussion of techniques, materials, training of the makers, and the internal politics of eye-making.

Fevered Lives: Tuberculosis in American Culture since 1870 (Cambridge, Mass.: Harvard University Press, 1996).

Nominated for the Longman-History Today Book of the Year Award.
By examining the technologies used to diagnose and treat tuberculosis, this book explains how the material culture of medicine influences the conceptualization of a disease as much as the medical textbook definitions.

“The Iron Lung in History and Cultural Memory,” in Mary Jo Arnoldi, ed., Engaging Smithsonian Objects through Science, History, and the Arts  (Smithsonian Institution Press, 2016):192-205.

Explains how understanding the history of the tank respirator, or iron lung, relates to its interpretation in a museum exhibit.

"Carnage Remembered: Prosthetics in the United States Military Since the 1860s," in Bernard Finn and Barton Hacker, eds., Materializing the Military (London: Science Museum, 2005): 47-64.

An overview of the influence of the military on the development and use of prosthetics.

“Using Science to Parse the Body: Some Artful Methods for Learning Medicine,” in Analyzing Art and Aesthetics, Anne Collins Goodyear and Margaret A. Weitekamp, editors (Washington, D.C.: Smithsonian Institution Scholarly Press, 2013): 2-16.

Analysis of the role of models in understanding the body, using three different medical objects.

“Collective Bodies; What Museums do for Disability Studies,” in Re-Presenting Disability; Activism and Agency in the Museum, Richard Sandell, Jocelyn Dodd, Rosemarie Garland-Thomson, eds. (New York, London: Routledge, 2010): 269-279.

A discussion of the politics and implications of disability content in exhibitions.

"Making Disability Public: An Interview with Katherine Ott" Interview by David Serlin, Radical History Review 94 (Winter 2006) pp. 197-211.

Discussion of issues that underpin the collecting and exhibiting of the history of disability and people with disabilies.

Scrapbooks In American Life, with Susan Tucker, Patricia Buckler, eds. (Philadelphia: Temple University Press, 2006).

A collection of essays examining the origins and different uses of scrapbooks through analysis of a variety of albums.  Winner of the Allen G. Noble Book Award for best edited volume on material culture.

“Local Photographers in the National Collection,” with Michelle Delaney in History of Photography Journal, vol. 24, no. 1, Spring (2000), pp. 63–64.
The Kennedys: Portrait of a Family, with Richard Avedon. New York: CollinsDesign, 2007.

No family has captured the fascination of the American public like the Kennedys. In 1961, acclaimed photographer Richard Avedon of Harper’s Bazaar magazine photographed president-elect John F. Kennedy and his young family. This study showcases a selection of previously unpublished images from the historic photo session. Avedon donated more than 200 photographs and negatives to the Museum in 1966, complementing the Museum’s 1962 acquisition of Jackie Kennedy’s inaugural gown.

“Frith’s Fabulous Photography,” DIG November/December (2004), vol. 6, no. 9, pp. 26–27.

Illustrated article about how Englishman Francis Frith made and sold photographs of Egypt’s historic relics and sites in the 1860s. DIG is a children’s archeology magazine.

“Things Panoramic,” Panorama, November (2003).

Illustrated article about panorama cameras and photographs in the Photographic History Collection.

“Process and 3-D Materials, National Museum of American History,” History of Photography, vol. 24, no. 1, Spring (2000), pp. 37–41.

Discusses photographs and equipment in the Photographic History Collection related to process and 3-D photography, especially as it connects to advertising and photojournalism, from 1840s-1960s.

“Coming into Focus,” Footsteps, January/February (2005) vol. 7, no.1, pp. 37–41.

Illustrated article about how daguerreotypes are made, and mentions African-American daguerreotypist Augustus Washington. Footsteps is a children’s magazine about African American history, this particular issue focuses on African American inventors.

Julian Stanczak: Decades of Light, State University of New York, Buffalo, Poetry & Rare Book Collection, (co author) 1990.
Friedensreich Hundertwasser, Taschen Verlag (Cologne, Germany, 1991) editions in German, French, English, Dutch, Spanish, Italian, Swedish, Danish (Japanese edition in press); abridged edition 1993; Hungarian, 1994; hardcover reprint 1997; second, compact, edition 2003.
Color: Suite In Four Parts, DOV Press, Washington, D.C. 1993.
"Merrill Mahaffey: Cue From Manet," Palm Springs Desert Museum, March 2000 (catalog essay).
The Dictionary of Art, MacMillan Ltd., London (contributor).
"Foreword," What If?: Collected Writings of Paolo Soleri 1986–2000 (Berkeley: Berkeley Hills) 2002.
"Lester Johnson: The Secret in Plain Sight" Catalog essay, Provinceton Art Museum, Massachusetts, June 2001.
The Clouds, DOV Press, Washington, D.C. 1996.
"Introduction," Clyde Lynds New Jersey State Art Museum, March 1993 (and subsequent tour).
"The Art of New York's Jews: A Delicate Lesson" catalog essay in Transformations: Jew and Modernity Arthur Ross Gallery, Philadelphia, University of Pennsyvlania Press, April 2001.
"The Uses of Obscurity", in Still Working, the New School for Social Research, NY, 1994 and subsequent tour: Corcoran Gallery, Washington, DC; IBM Gallery, N.Y., etc.

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