The role of the Colonial Medical Service - the organisation responsible for healthcare in British overseas territories - goes to the heart of the British Colonial project. "Practising Colonial Medicine" is a unique study based on original sources and research into the work of doctors who served in East Africa. It shows the formulation of a distinct colonial identity based on factors of race, class, background, training and Colonial Service traditions, buttressed by professional skills and practice. Anna Crozier analyses all aspects of recruitment, qualifications, training as well as the vital personal factors that shaped the Service's character - religion, a sense of adventure, professional interest, ideas of imperial service, family traditions, professional ties, perceptions of service to humanity and the building up of a common service mentality among colonial medical staff. This is the first comprehensive history of the Colonial Medical Service and makes an important contribution to our understanding of the social and cultural aspects of medical history.
Anna Crozier is a Research Fellow at the Centre for the Social History of Health and Healthcare, Glasgow, at the University of Strathclyde. She researches the history of colonial medicine in East Africa and is currently engaged in a medical history of Zanzibar.