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Public Lecture: “Forgotten Histories of Thalidomide in Africa & the World," Queen's University

Kingston, Ontario
September 30
, 2014

6:30-8:00 p.m.
Queen's University Campus, 28 Division Street, Kinesiology Building, Room 101

Known as one of the world’s worst drug disasters, the distribution of thalidomide to pregnant women in the 50s and 60s caused at least 10,000 people to be born with serious deformities including shortened limbs (phocomelia). Canadian born thalidomiders continue to press for appropriate recognition and support. Many assume that thalidomide has not had a presence in Africa until very recently as a treatment for various conditions including cancers and AIDS. Professor Parle's lecture challenges the assumption that there was no epidemic of thalidomide in Africa. She suggests that a new history of thalidomide is emerging in regions outside the “developed world” owing as much to social media and survivor activism networks, as to the investigations of scientists, lawyers, or multinational pharmaceutical interests.

Julie Parle is an Honorary Associate Professor of History in the School of Social Science at the University of KwaZulu-Natal in South Africa. She is also a thalidomider.

This venue is wheelchair accessible. ASL Interpretation offered. For accessibility requests, please contact the Queen’s Equity Office: 613-533-2563.

Admission: Free!

Open to the public.