WorldCanvass focuses on hysteria

The rich and problematic history of hysteria is the subject of the next WorldCanvass program from 5 to 7 p.m., Friday, Jan. 27, in the Senate Chamber of the Old Capitol Museum.

The program will take a multi-disciplinary look at the history of hysteria, investigating its social, cultural, and medical context. While hysteria is no longer considered a valid medical term, it was once thought to be a disease of women with a wide array of symptoms including headaches, nervousness, excessive expressiveness, and sexual dysfunction.

A particular focus of this program will be Sarah Ruhl’s Pulitzer Prize–nominated play In the Next Room (or The Vibrator Play), which will be presented at E.C. Mabie Theatre in February.

WorldCanvass is a production of International Programs in partnership with the UI Pentacrest Museums, UITV, KRUI, and Information Technology Services. This program is free and the public is encouraged to attend, listen to the live broadcast on KRUI-FM, or watch the live video stream on the International Programs’ website.

For more information and a complete description of the program’s featured guests, contact WorldCanvass host Joan Kjaer at or 319-335-2026 or visit