Miracles in Modern Medicine

Miracles in Modern Medicine, a film screened only once since its controversial debut during Montreal’s Expo ’67, is being screened on Memorial’s St. John’s campus March 9.

Robert Cordier, the film’s director, will be in attendance.Shot in 1966 at the Royal Victoria Hospital, the Montreal General Hospital, the Hotel Dieu, and the Montreal Rehabilitation Institute, the 19-minute film documents six medical interventions in a cinematic consideration of the marriage of humans and machines at vital medicalized moments.

Mr. Cordier will be joined by historian of medicine Dr. Steven Palmer, University of Windsor, who rediscovered the film at Library and Archives Canada.

According to Dr. Palmer, who is originally from St. John’s, the graphic medical film was such a shock for viewers at the 1967 Montreal World Exhibition (Expo ’67) that a reported 200 people a day fainted while watching it.

Dr. Palmer will offer a commentary on the Montreal medical community’s leadership role in establishing the Expo theme pavilions as well as a reconstruction of the Man and His Health/L’homme et le santé pavillon, and its core Meditheatre performance space where the film was screened. Following the screening, Mr. Cordier will be interviewed by writer Edward Riche.

Mr. Riche and Dr. Palmer are currently collaborating on a documentary about Mr. Cordier’s life and work.

Miracles in Modern Medicine – 1967 is being presented by the Office of the Provost and Vice-President (Academic) and the Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences.


Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences

230 Elizabeth Ave, St. John's, NL, CANADA, A1B 3X9

Postal Address: P.O. Box 4200, St. John's, NL, CANADA, A1C 5S7

Tel: (709) 864-8000