Dr Janet Weston
BA MA MSc PhD
15-17 Tavistock Place
I originally studied English Literature at university, and worked in the charity sector while obtaining an MA in Contemporary Literature and an MSc in the history of science and medicine. I then returned to academia full-time for a PhD in History at Birkbeck, University of London. My PhD examined medical explanations and treatments for sexual offenders over the 20th century, and formed the basis of my first book, Medicine, the Penal System, and Sexual Crime in England 1919-1960s (Bloomsbury, 2017).
I joined the Centre for History in Public Health at LSHTM in 2016.
Health in History
Principles of Social Research
I currently hold a Wellcome Trust Research Fellowship (2018-2021), to investigate the history of mental incapacity in Britain and Ireland over the twentieth century. I am focusing on decisions and disputes over individuals' capacity to manage their financial affairs, and am particularly interested in how ideas of mental capacity have been affected by attitudes towards old age, gender, class, disability, and ideas of autonomy and vulnerability.
In September 2021, I will be starting a new project, also funded by the Wellcome Trust, titled 'Ethics and British public health law, 1920-2020'. As well as investigating the changing role and nature of ethics within British public health law, this will develop the public health humanities as a mode of designing and implementing interdisciplinary research in public health.
I originally joined LSHTM as part of a Wellcome Trust-funded project, 'Prisoners, Medical Care and Entitlement to Health in England and Ireland, 1850-2000', to work on the impact of HIV/AIDS on healthcare for prisoners in the 1980s and 1990s.
I am interested more generally in historical perspectives on deviance and difference, prisons and crime, law and policy, and ethics, particularly in relation to mental health, gender, sexuality, age, disability. I am interested in supervising doctoral candidates in any of these areas.