Thesis ID: CBB854675562

The Emergence of Pain Quantification and Visualization in the Computation Culture of Cold War Era United States (2018)


This thesis draws together design history, pain science, and information studies to consider the ways that medical clinicians incorporated quantitative methods and tools from graphic and industrial design and, reciprocally, the ways in which designers used methods and ideas from the biomedical sciences in the US and UK between 1945 and 2015. The project is organized around postwar changes in pain science in clinical medicine and proposes that a measurement, representation, and move toward quantification in clinical pain medicine occurred in tandem with the turn toward computing in the arts and in graphic design. Subsequent advancements in personal and wearable computing shifted health and wellness personal technologies markets around concepts of “self-health.” The project culminates in the emergence of “the quantified self,” a concept interpreted in this project to the development of quantitative tools and methods in computing and computer graphics devoted to advancing a neoliberal model of knowledge and experience of the individual’s bodily pain.

Citation URI

Similar Citations

Chapter Tousignant, Noemi; (2014)
A Quantity of Suffering: Measuring Pain as Emotion in the Mid-Twentieth Century United States (/isis/citation/CBB001202328/) unapi

Thesis Tousignant, Noemi R.; (2006)
Pain and the Pursuit of Objectivity: Pain-Measuring Technologies in the UnitedStates, c. 1890--1975 (/isis/citation/CBB001561511/) unapi

Chapter Radstake, Maud; (2009)
Looking for a Sponge: How a Body Learns to be Affected by Ultrasound (/isis/citation/CBB000952930/) unapi

Chapter Cohn, Simon; (2007)
Seeing and Drawing: The Role of Play in Medical Imaging (/isis/citation/CBB000953729/) unapi

Article Mallard, John R.; (2003)
The Evolution of Medical Imaging from Geiger Counters to MRI: A Personal Saga (/isis/citation/CBB000640626/) unapi

Chapter Saunders, Barry; (2007)
CT Suite: Visual Apprenticeship in the Age of the Mechanical Viewbox (/isis/citation/CBB000953732/) unapi

Article Turrini, Mauro; (2013)
Computer Versus Microscope: Visual Activity Fields of Instruments in the Information Age (/isis/citation/CBB001320496/) unapi

Book Munt, Sally R.; (2001)
Technospaces: Inside the New Media (/isis/citation/CBB000302154/) unapi

Book Ryan, Johnny; (2010)
A History of the Internet and the Digital Future (/isis/citation/CBB001033356/) unapi

Article Heide, Lars; (1997)
Shaping a Technology: American Punched Card Systems 1880-1914 (/isis/citation/CBB000111235/) unapi

Book Kane, Carolyn L.; (2014)
Chromatic Algorithms: Synthetic Color, Computer Art, and Aesthetics after Code (/isis/citation/CBB001422036/) unapi

Book Brunton, Finn; (2013)
Spam: A Shadow History of the Internet (/isis/citation/CBB001211855/) unapi

Essay Review Fuqua, Joy V.; (2013)
Visions of Technology, Gender, and Knowledge Production (/isis/citation/CBB001566402/) unapi

Article Basak, Subhash C.; (2013)
Philosophy of Mathematical Chemistry: A Personal Perspective (/isis/citation/CBB001320762/) unapi

Book Kurgan, Laura; (2013)
Close up at a Distance: Mapping, Technology, and Politics (/isis/citation/CBB001421350/) unapi

Chapter Vall, Renée van de; (2009)
A Penny for your Thoughts: Brain-Scans and the Mediation of Subjective Embodiment (/isis/citation/CBB000952928/) unapi

Book Stahnisch, Frank; (2007)
Bild und Gestalt: Wie formen Medienpraktiken das Wissen in Medizin und Humanwissenschaften? (/isis/citation/CBB001032223/) unapi

Article Peters, Benjamin; (2009)
And lead us not into thinking that the new is new: A bibliographic case for new media history (/isis/citation/CBB001180042/) unapi

Authors & Contributors
Tousignant, Noemi R.
Heide, Lars
Munt, Sally R.
Joyce, Kelly A.
Mallard, John R.
Vall, Renée van de
IEEE Annals of the History of Computing
Science as Culture
Perspectives in Biology and Medicine
Journal of the History of Medicine and Allied Sciences
New Media & Society
Spontaneous Generations
Reaktion Books
The MIT Press
Zone Books
University of Chicago Press
Medical instruments and apparatus
Visual representation; visual communication
Computer media
Computers and computing
Medical technology
Time Periods
20th century, late
21st century
20th century
20th century, early
19th century
United States

Be the first to comment!

{{ comment.created_by.username }} on {{ comment.created_on | date:'medium' }}

Log in or register to comment