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In the 1950s, the health interventions we may consider routine were still revolutionary.

Antibiotics had only recently become available, and chemotherapy was still new. Even the ideas that children had distinct personalities and that child development was worth studying were novel.

And in those days of the Cold War, midcentury Americans had to wonder: was it possible for the communist world to brainwash them?

Enter the New York Academy of Medicine and WNYC, a radio station owned by New York City at the time. During the 1940s and 1950s, they created health-related lecture broadcasts, some directed at the public and others at doctors. Now, those lectures are online, digitized by NYAM and New York Public Radio, and they present an intriguing view of the state of midcentury medicine and health.

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