About

Kelly Jan 2019 - 1.jpg

Hello! I am a Philadelphia-based historian specializing in the history of medicine and gender in the United States.

As a first-generation college student, I graduated from Sarah Lawrence College in 2009. I then earned my Ph.D. in History at Yale University's Program in the History of Science and Medicine, where I wrote a dissertation on women’s health activism. After graduate school, I spent a year working at a non-profit women's health advocacy organization, before realizing how much I missed teaching.

Broadly, my research examines the complicated relationships that women have had with medicine throughout history. I have written on topics ranging from the development of new menstrual products to underground illegal abortion practices. At the moment I am working on two book-length projects: 1) a reassessment of the 1970 U.S. Senate hearings on the safety of oral contraceptives, adapted from my dissertation, and 2) a history of doctors' wives and the role they played in shaping American medicine in the nineteenth and twentieth centuries.

When not reading or writing, I can be found running (very slowly) or exploring coffee shops of the greater Philadelphia area. You can also find me on Twitter at @KellyODonn.