Leena Akhtar is a graduate of the Department of the History of Science at Harvard University. Prior to this, she received an MA in Cultural History from the University of London and an advanced certificate in Trauma and Violence Transdisciplinary Studies from New York University. After spending several years working in finance, she was the Director of Exhibits and Archives at the Museum of American Finance from 2008-2011.
Her scholarly interests focus on the history of medicine and mid to late 20th century psychiatry, particularly trauma psychiatry. Her dissertation, “From Masochists to Trauma Victims: Psychiatry, Law, and the Feminist Anti-Rape Movement of the 1970s,” is about the impact of Second Wave feminist activism on understandings of rape survivors-- work that has been influenced and informed by her six years as a rape crisis counselor and emergency room advocate in Pittsburgh and New York City.
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