Kym Weed is Assistant Director of Graduate Studies and Senior Lecturer of Medicine, Health, and Society. She holds a Ph.D. in English from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill as well as an M.A. in English from the University of Maryland, College Park and a B.S. in Biochemistry & Molecular Biology from Lebanon Valley College. Weed’s research and teaching coalesce around the literary and cultural study of science and medicine, exploring the narratives that shape understandings of illness, health, disability, and embodiment. Her work has appeared in Literature and Medicine and The Journal of Medical Humanities.
Weed’s book project, “Our Microbes: Imagining Human Interdependence with Bacteria in American Literature, Science, and Culture, 1880-1920,” merges her background in microbiology and literary studies to examine the diverse representations of microorganisms in the years between the popularization of the germ theory of disease and the widespread use of antibiotics. It articulates a counternarrative of human-microbe partnership that emerged alongside the narratives of anxiety and fear that have been the focus of most scholarly study of nineteenth-century bacteriology. The project attends to the fiction authors, bacteriologists, industry leaders, and domestic workers who locate utility and possibility in the microbial world.
In her teaching, Weed aims to train students to use humanistic ways of knowing in their study of all aspects of human health. Her courses include MHS 3890: Health Humanities, MHS 6500: Narratives of Contagion // Contagious Narratives, and MHS 6500: Interdisciplinary Writing.
- Health Humanities
- American Literature
- History of Science and Medicine
- Literature & Science