University at Buffalo Department of History


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David Herzberg, Associate Professor

and Director of the MA Program
office: 565 Park Hall
phone: (716) 645-8416

personal web page:



BA, Wesleyan University 1993

MA,   University Of Wisconsin-Madison 1997

PhD,   University Of Wisconsin-Madison 2005

Courses Regularly Taught:

Post-45 U.S. History
Alcohol & Other Drugs in American History
Health and Illness in American History


Field(s):  U.S. History; Cultural History; Gender History; History of Health & Illness

Hub(s):   Culture & Society, Knowledge


Research Interests: Medicines & Drugs; Popular Culture


Current Research : History of prescription drug abuse; 20th century pharmaceuticals and the consumer culture.


Selected Publications:


Happy Pills in America: From Miltown to Prozac, Johns Hopkins University Press, 2009


“Busted for Blockbusters: ‘Scrip Mills’ and Prescribing Power in the 1970s,” in Jeremy
Greene and Elizabeth Segal Watkins, eds., The Prescription in Perspective: Therapeutic
Authority in Late 20th Century America (Johns Hopkins University Press, forthcoming)

“Blockbusters and Controlled Substances: Miltown, Quaalude, and Consumer Demand for
Drugs in Postwar America,” Cambridge Studies in the History and Philosophy of the
Biological Sciences, forthcoming

(with Jeremy Greene) “Hidden in Plain Sight: The Popular Promotion of Prescription Drugs
in the 20th Century,” American Journal of Public Health (May 2010): 793-803 -- Winner of the Paper of the Year Award from the American Journal of Public Health, the official organ of the American Public Health Association.

“Tranquilizing the Caveman: Miltown and Manhood in the Cold War Era” in Angela Laflen
and Marcelline Block, eds., Gender Scripts in Medicine and Narrative (Newcastle:
Cambridge Scholars Publishing, 2010)

“’Will Wonder Drugs Never Cease!’: A Prehistory of Direct-to-Consumer Advertising,”
Pharmacy in History 51(2), 2009, p. 47-56

"'The Pill You Love Can Turn On You': Feminism, Tranquilizers, and the Valium Panic of the
1970s." American Quarterly (March 2006).

"Drug Wars and Wonder Drugs" [review essay]. American Quarterly (December 2005).

"Thinking Through War: The Social Thought of Richard T. Ely, John R. Commons, and Edward A. Ross During the First World War." Journal of the History of the Behavioral Sciences 37 (Spring 2001).

(with Robert Shibley) "The Rudy Bruner Award for Urban Excellence," "Yerba Buena Gardens, San Francisco," "Pike Place Public Market, Seattle," "Portland's 1972 Downtown Plan, Portland, OR," and "Lessons From the Bruner Archive," in Donald Watson, Alan Plattus, Robert Shibley, eds., Time Saver Standards for Urban Design . New York: McGraw-Hill Professional, 2003.



•  Paper of the Year Award from the American Journal of Public Health, the official organ of the American Public Health Association.

• Jacob K. Javits Fellowship, 1997-2001.

• Honorable Mention, Shryock Medal, American Association for the History of Medicine, 2002.

• Baensch Prize in Wisconsin History, University of Wisconsin, 1998.


Affiliations and other notes :

• American Association for the History of Medicine

• American historical association

• American Studies Association

• Organization of American Historians











Last updated: Tuesday, March 19, 2013

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