Professor Linda Bryder

DPhil (Oxford), MA (1st Class Hons) (Auckland)


Linda gained her DPhil at the University of Oxford in 1985, where she was held the Clifford Norton Junior Research Fellowship in the History of Science at Queen’s College. Her thesis was subsequently published by Oxford University Press as Below the Magic Mountain: A Social History of Tuberculosis in Twentieth-century Britain. In 1987 she was awarded a British Academy Post-doctoral Fellowship. In 1988 Linda helped found and was inaugural editor of the Oxford journal, Social History of Medicine.

Over her career Linda has taught and researched the field of the social history of health and medicine, with a particular emphasis on twentieth-century Britain and New Zealand. Subjects have included reproductive health, the history of childbirth, infant care, nursing, and public health provision.

She is a Fellow of the New Zealand Academy for the Humanities, Te Matanga o Te Whainga Aronui, and a Fellow of the Royal Society of New Zealand Te Apārangi. She is an honorary professor of the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine, and a collaborator on a Wellcome Trust research project led by Professor Martin Gorsky of the LSHTM on international health systems. In 2017 she delivered the Annual John C. Burnham Lecture in the History of Medicine and Science at the Ohio State University, USA, and has been a Visiting Fellow at the Centre for the History of Healthcare, Glasgow.

She is currently co-editor of the New Zealand Journal of History, and series editor with Professor Martin Gorsky of Studies in the History of Healthcare, Peter Lang International Academic Publishers.

Research | Current

Social and cultural history of health and medicine in twentieth-century New Zealand, including the history of public health policy, maternity, child health, tuberculosis, medical education, and nursing.

Teaching | Current

HISTORY 210 Health, Medicine and Society

HISTORY 262 Social Welfare in New Zealand, 1840-2000

HISTORY 362 Social Welfare in New Zealand, 1840-2000

HISTORY 367 Health, Medicine and Society

HISTORY 725AB Health, Medicine and Society

Postgraduate supervision

Linda Bryder supervises in the area of the history of health, medicine and society in New Zealand. She will also consider supervising related topics for other countries if the resources are available.

Current supervision (main supervisor)


  • Ella Arbury, “A Healthy Home: The influence of ideas about health on Maori and Pakeha homes in Auckland, 1918-1949”
  • John Collins, "Attitudes of surgeons, experiences of patients and the perception of the public to surgery in the nineteenth century"
  • Sheree Trotter, "Zionism in New Zealand: 1897-1948".
  • Chris Turnbull, “New Zealand in the Pacific”
  • Tess Mazey-Richardson, "Youth Suicide in New Zealand Aotearoa: A Socio-Cultural History of Responses to Youth Suicide, 1960-2000"


  • Rachel Schmidt, "Pacific mothers experiences in antenatal care, childbirth, postnatal care, and infant and childcare from chidbirth to five years of age during the 1970s"
  • Kershia Singh, "Indian Delights: A Cookbook’s Journey through South Africa and New Zealand’s Diasporic Communities"
  • Jordan Scordino, "AIDS & Aotearoa: The New Zealand AIDS Response within a Global Context"

BA Hons dissertations

  • Nancy Mitchelson, "Stopping the Rot: Efforts to Revitalise Auckland’s Decaying Centre, 1960-1980"
  • Nathan McLeay, "A history of the Auckland waterfront, 1945-present"

Recently completed PhDs

  • Hannah Cutting-Jones, "Feasts of Change: Food and History in the Cook Islands, 1825–1975”, 2018.
  • Courtney Harper, "Towards Self-Sufficiency": Public Health Responses to Diabetes in Twentieth-Century New Zealand c.1920-2000", 2016.
  • Nicholas Taewa, "'Hope Deferred': A Study of Cancer in New Zealand, 1882-1939", 2014.
  • Katrina Ford, " The Tyranny of the Microbe: Microbial Mentalities in New Zealand, c.1880-1915”, 2013.
  • Deborah Jowitt, "Government Policy Relating to Hepatitis B in New Zealand 1970-2005", 2010.
  • Claire Gooder, "A History of Sex Education in New Zealand, 1939-1985", 2010.
  • Joanne Richdale, "Lifting the Veil of Silence: Personal Abortion Narratives in New Zealand, 1919-1937", 2010.
  • Jill Wrapson, "Fluoridation of New Zealand's Public Water Supplies: A Historical Investigation into Societal Attitudes and Concerns, 1950-2008", 2009.
  • Alison Day, "Child Immunisation: Reactions and Responses in New Zealand Government Policy, 1920-1990", 2008.
  • Deborah Dunsford, "Seeking the Prize of Eradication: A Social History of Tuberculosis in New Zealand from World War Two to the 1970s", 2008.
  • Kate Prebble, "Ordinary Men and Uncommon Women: A History of Psychiatric Nursing in New Zealand Public Mental Hospitals, 1939-1972", 2007.
  • Antje Kampfe, "To Map out the 'Venereal Wilderness': A History of Venereal Diseases and Public Health in New Zealand, 1920-1980", 2005.

Recently completed MAs

  • Kieran Sinclair, "Democracy and NZ Political Culture, 1984-1990", 2019
  • Andrew Hart, 'The University of Auckland Medical School, 1960-1980', 2018
  • Ione Cussen, "'Love Child': Single Motherhood in Late Twentieth century New Zealand", 2016.
  • Jennifer Sutton, “Child health during the Liberal period, 1891-1912”, 2015
  • Samantha Salisbury, “A Disempowered Handmaiden?: Hospital Midwives and the Process of Medical and Political Change, 1950-1990”, 2014
  • Omar Hamed, “Resistance to Neo-Liberalism in New Zealand: An analysis of three campaigns against user pays and privatisation”, 2013.
  • Willem van Gent, '"From alternative to complementary: A history of chiropractic in twentieth century New Zealand", 2012.
  • Ella Arbury, "Breast or bottle? Breast-feeding Attitudes and Practices in New Zealand 1900-1963", 2011.
  • Courtney Harper, '"The art of eating has, in fact, become a science': Dietary Advice in New Zealand from the Interwar Period to 1960", 2009.
  • Katherine Lucas, '"God Given Science': The History of the Relationship between Orthodox and Alternative Medicine in New Zealand, 1850-1960, with special reference to Homeopathy", 2008.
  • Elinor Harris, "Vitality for Sale: 'Modern Miracle' or 'Monument to the Misused Power of Printer's Ink'? Medical Advertising and Quackery in New Zealand in the 1935-1955", 2008.
  • Nicholas Taewa, "To 'Ruralise' the Towns: The Slum, Town Planning and Environmental Eugenics in New Zealand, 1900-1926", 2008.
  • Gabrielle Bourke, "Illuminating the Dark Hour: Auckland 's St Helens Hospital, 1906-1990", 2006.
  • Scott Morgan, "A history of general practice in New Zealand 1955 to 1995", The University of Auckland MA thesis, 2006.
  • Christina Jeffery, "Whanautanga: The Experiences of Maori Women who Gave Birth at National Women's Hospital, 1958-2004", 2005.


  • Fellow of the Royal Society of New Zealand
  • Fellow of the New Zealand Academy of Humanities
  • University of Auckland Teaching Excellence Award 2010
  • University of Auckland Research Excellence Award 2014


  • Professor of History
  • Associate Dean Research Faculty of Arts
  • Director, Auckland History Initiative
  • Co-editor, New Zealand Journal of History
  • Book Series editor with Martin Gorsky (London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine), Studies in the History of Medicine and Healthcare (Peter Lang Oxford publishers)

Committees/Professional groups/Services

  • Chair, Faculty of Arts Research Strategy Committee
  • University of Auckland Research Comittee
  • University Staffing Committee

Selected publications and creative works (Research Outputs)

  • Bryder, L. (2019). Doctors in Denial: The Forgotten Women in the ‘Unfortunate Experiment’, by Ronald W. Jones (2017) [Book Review]. Journal of New Zealand & Pacific Studies, 7 (1), 115-117. 10.1386/nzps.7.1.95_5
  • Bryder, L. (2019). Mobilising Mothers: The 1917 National Baby Week. Medical History, 63 (1), 2-23. 10.1017/mdh.2018.60
  • Bryder, L., & Dow, D. (2018). Faculty of Medical and Health Sciences History. Related URL.
    Other University of Auckland co-authors: Derek Dow
  • Bryder, L. (2018). Response to: Over-diagnosis and the Cancer Label. BMJ, 362, k3528-k3528. 10.1136/bmj.k3528
  • Bryder, L. (2018). Challenging New Zealand's icon: Sir Frederic Truby King. Social History of Medicine10.1093/shm/hky051
  • Bryder, L. (2018). History of medicine in Australia and New Zealand. In M. Jackson (Ed.) A global history of medicine (pp. 220-242). Oxford, UK: Oxford University Press. Related URL.
  • Bryder, L. (2018). “Money in itself does not equate with welfare”: Ideas around the welfare state in 1970s New Zealand and their consequences. In E. Eklund, M. Oppenheimer, J. Scott (Eds.) The State of Welfare: Comparative Studies of the Welfare State at the End of the Long Boom, 1965-1980 (pp. 105-130). Oxford, UK: Peter Lang. 10.3726/b10548
  • Bryder, L. (2018). More than educators: New Zealand's Plunket nurses, 1907-1950. Nursing History Review, 26 (1), 83-96. 10.1891/1062-8061.26.83


Contact details

Primary office location

ARTS 1 - Bldg 206
Level 7, Room 729
New Zealand

Web links