Teaching Race Science at the College of Physicians and Surgeons

This exhibit on Columbia University and slavery explores the intersection of science and racism as it was embedded in the academic discourse at Columbia University and the College of Physicians & Surgeons (P&S). In the nineteenth century, racist scientific beliefs were researched, written about, and taught in the classrooms at Columbia, as commonplace medical knowledge. This exhibit traces the changing contexts in which racial science was taught and debated, highlighting three distinct periods. This exhibit is based on lecture notes of P&S students in 1812-13 and 1829-32, and textbooks used in the late 1890s and early 1900s. 


Elana Sulakshana