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HoHee Cho

DPhil Student

  • St Hugh's College
  • Research Topic: Imperial Health: Intercolonial Medical Cooperation in the British South Pacific, 1920-50s
  • Supervisor: Professor Mark Harrison

Imperial Health: Centralisation of Medical Institutions in the British South Pacific

My research concerns the global history of medicine, focusing on the British Empire in the South Pacific. My doctoral thesis examines how twelve Pacific Islands jointly operated medical institutions during the first half of the twentieth century. Supported by extensive archival research in the UK, US, New Zealand, Australia, and Fiji, I argue that healthcare in the South Pacific was shaped under an imperial agenda to bring a group of colonies under one system. By teasing out the complex dynamics of inter-colonial, inter-imperial, and intra-imperial relations in medical institutions, my thesis helps to remedy a profound lack of research on the region. In addition, it situates indigenous healthcare in Oceania in larger discourses of medical, imperial, and Pacific history.

I am currently co-editing a special issue with Medical History (forthcoming in 2023), to which I am also contributing a research article. Previously, my work has been published in Western History Review and Asia Pacific Education Review.

I have been teaching undergraduate courses in Oxford since 2019. For this academic year (2022-23), I am co-convening two courses, the Further Subject 'Authority of Nature: Race, Heredity and Crime, 1800-1940' for the History Faculty and the Supplementary Subject 'History and Philosophy of Science, 1500-1900' for the Honour School of Natural Science.

Before Starting my DPhil in Oxford, I received a BA and an MA from Korea University, Seoul. Between degrees, I worked full-time at the Korean National Commission for UNESCO and part-time for the UK National Commission for UNESCO and the National Museum of Korea. 

Supervisor: Professor Mark Harrison