The Fund supports networks of state health policy decision makers to help identify, inspire, and inform policy leaders.
The Milbank Memorial Fund supports two state leadership programs for legislative and executive branch state government officials committed to improving population health.
The Fund identifies and shares policy ideas and analysis to advance state health leadership, strong primary care, healthy aging, and sustainable health care costs.
Keep up with news and updates from the Milbank Memorial Fund. And read the latest blogs from our thought leaders, including Fund President Christopher F. Koller.
The Fund publishes The Milbank Quarterly, as well as reports, issues briefs, and case studies on topics important to health policy leaders.
The Milbank Memorial Fund is is a foundation that works to improve population health and health equity.
May 26, 2023
May 23, 2023
Back to The Milbank Quarterly
The expansion of diagnostic categories in the late nineteenth century to include behaviors not previously interpreted as medical problems raised questions about the validity of defining behaviors as disease and the role of individual responsibility for these behaviors. One instance of this medicalization of behavior was the elaboration of “sexual inversion” as a new disease in American medical writings of the period. In searching for a defining characteristic of diverse cases, clinicians described sexuality as a fundamental aspect of being rather than simply an aspect of behavior, and created an identity for their patients that altered the way they thought about themselves and were viewed by society. Although the medical diagnosis later became a central feature in the social oppression of homosexuals, it offered the possibility of construing behaviors in a new way.
Author(s): Bert Hansen
Download the article
Read on JSTOR
Volume 67, Issue S1 (pages 92–108) Published in 1989
Get the Latest from the Milbank Memorial Fund
The Milbank Quarterly’s multidisciplinary approach and commitment to applying the best empirical research to practical policymaking offers in-depth assessments of the social, economic, political, historical, legal, and ethical dimensions of health and health care policy.