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School of History

Dr Jenny Bangham

Wellcome University Award Lecturer



Jenny Bangham specialises in the history of medicine and the biomedical sciences. She is author of Blood Relations: Transfusion and the Making of Human Genetics (University of Chicago Press, 2020). With Emma Kowal and Boris Jardine she co-edited 'How Collections End: Objects and Loss in Laboratories and Museums' (BJHS Themes, vol. 4, 2019), and with Xan Chacko and Judith Kaplan is co-editing 'Invisible Labour: Power and Politics in Science' (Rowman and Littlefield, forthcoming). She earned a PhD in biology at University College London, and worked as a laboratory geneticist in Edinburgh, where she developed an interest in the cultures and histories of science. She completed an MPhil and PhD in the Department of History and Philosophy of Science, University of Cambridge, and worked at the Max Planck Institute for the History of Science in Berlin, before joining the School of History at Queen Mary.


Research Interests:

I'm a historian interested in emotions and politics of genetics. My first book, Blood Relations (2020) charts the close relationship between blood transfusion and mid-century human genetics. At Queen Mary University of London, I am working on a second book about the history of genetic counselling in the United Kingdom and Ireland. I've also written about animals, laboratory collections, nomenclatures and invisible labour in science.


Bangham, J. Blood Relations: Transfusion and the Making of Human Genetics, 325pp. University of Chicago Press (2020). 

Bangham, J. ‘Living collections: Care and curation at Drosophila stock centres,’ BJHS Themes 4: 123–147 (2019). 

Jardine, B., Kowal E., Bangham, J. ‘Introduction: How Collections End’, BJHS Themes, 4: 1–27 (2019). 

Bangham, J. ‘What Is Race?: UNESCO, mass communication and human genetics in the early 1950s’, History of the Human Sciences 28, 80–107 (2015) 

Bangham, J. ‘Blood groups and human groups: Collecting and calibrating genetic data after World War Two’. Studies in the History and Philosophy of the Biological and Biomedical Sciences, 47, 74–86 (2014). 

Bangham, J. ‘Writing, printing, speaking: Rhesus blood-group genetics and nomenclatures in the mid-twentieth century.’ British Journal of the History of Science, 47, 335–361 (2014). 

Bangham, J. and de Charadavian, S., ‘Human heredity after 1945: Moving populations centre stage.’ Studies in the History and Philosophy of the Biological and Biomedical Sciences 47, 45–49 (2014).


Histories of twentieth-century biomedicine; histories of science communication; histories of anthropology.