surgeons bending over with scalpels in their handsA heart’s eye view of surgery from the film “Miracles in Modern Medicine.”

Historian cited in analysis of film’s cultural impact

When Miracles in Modern Medicine premiered at Expo 67, the Montreal World’s Fair, it featured what UWindsor history professor Steven Palmer says was then “the most taboo media image in Western society” — a birth scene that included full-frontal nudity.

With its uncensored depictions of medical procedures, the documentary film attracted millions of viewers, as many as 200 of them fainting from shock each day. Dr. Palmer rediscovered the film in the national archives and worked with original director Robert Cordier to restore it. In 2015, he co-hosted its first public screening since 1967.

An article in the general interest magazine The Walrus traces the film’s impact on popular culture, arguing it ushered in a new appreciation of the human body. Read Simon Lewsen’s piece, The Movie That Shocked Canada.