Dr Becky Martin
BA (hons) MSc PhD
15-17 Tavistock Place
I am an historian by training; I completed undergraduate degree in History at the University of Kent before taking the MSc programme in the History of Science, Medicine, and Technology at Oxford. I received my doctorate in the History and Philosphy of Science from the Department of Science and Technology Studies at University College London in 2020 and was the first in my department to sit a virtual viva during the pandemic (you can read more about this experience in Alchemy 2020).
My doctoral work, Normalising Whiteness: the use of anatomical models in British medical teaching, explored the physical and theoretical construction of white normality in British anatomical teaching during the late nineteenth century, focussing on anatomical models and other teaching resources. This work was highly interdisciplinary, drawing on methods from history, material culture studies, and marketing theory to create a holistic approach to the history of objects. My research demonstrated that consistent whiteness within anatomical models, and other teaching materials, significantly contributed to the creation and perpetuation of ideas of racial difference and white superiority within nineteenth century British anatomical classrooms. This is important when we consider the continued use of this style of anatomical model (and in some cases, the original nineteenth century objects themselves) by medical students today .
I recently edited and co-authored the School’s Colonial History Report, and finished work as a Research Associate on the Emerging Research Cultures project, looking at the research culture in biosciences PhD programmes funded by the Wellcome Trust.
Alongside my post at LSHTM, I remain an Honorary Research Fellow in the Department of Science and Technology Studies at UCL and act as the Administrative Coordinator for the Society for the History of Alchemy and Chemistry (SHAC).
I contribute towards team teaching on the History & Health module. I also act as a marker on both the History & Health module and the History Centre’s distance learning module, run in coordination with the University of London.
I currently tutor and supervise one student on the MSc in Public Health.
I began working at LSHTM on a project exploring the legacy of the school's colonial past begun by Dr Lioba Hirsch in 2019. I looked at how the LSHTM's colonial past has continued to impact research, teaching, and relations with international partners at the school from 1960 to the present day, building on Lioba's work which established the role British colonialism and imperialism played in the founding and history of the school.
I am now working on the Wellcome-funded Global Health Systems project at LSHTM, looking at the development of Health Systems in colonial and post-colonial Nigeria. I simultaneously hold a Caird Fellowship at the National Maritime Museum looking at the human materials collected by and colonial interactions of the 1872-76 HMS Challenger expedition during its 150th anniversary years.