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Jeffrey Paul Baker, MD, PhD

Professor of Pediatrics
Professor of the Practice of History
Associate of the Duke Initiative for Science & Society
Campus mail: 234 Crooked Creek Parkway, Durham, NC 27713
Phone: (919) 620-5374
Email address: jeffrey.baker@duke.edu

I am a practicing pediatrician and a medical historian.   My early research focused on the early history of premature infant care and neonatal medicine.   Featured in my book, The Machine in the Nursery: Incubator Technology and the Origins of Neonatal Intensive Care, I examined how the controversy around the introduction of baby incubators at the dawn of the 20th century became a flash point for broader anxieties around medical technology, eugenics, and the role of physicians versus mothers in the care of young infants.   
My later research moved to this history of vaccines, and why this highly-regarded public health intervention ignited fierce public resistance in the late 20th century.  The alleged links between vaccines and autism were an important part of this story which led me to work on other aspect of the history of autism as well.  I have spoken and written in particular about the role of Leo Kanner in shaping both the definition of autism and the construction of an associated stereotype of parents as brilliant but cold and aloof.

In the past three years I have been focusing on history, race, and health disparities.  I have been working on a project exploring this question in Duke's home community of Durham, North Carolina.   The first phase of this work looked at four case studies over the course of the past century:  tuberculosis in the early 1900s, childbirth during desegregation, HIV, and diabetes since 2000.   I am continuing to extend this work, and integrate it into my teaching and scholarship.

Education and Training

  • Ph.D., Duke University, 1993
  • M.D., Duke University, 1984

Publications

Carpenter, Kimberly L. H., Jordan Hahemi, Kathleen Campbell, Steven J. Lippmann, Jeffrey P. Baker, Helen L. Egger, Steven Espinosa, Saritha Vermeer, Guillermo Sapiro, and Geraldine Dawson. “Digital Behavioral Phenotyping Detects Atypical Pattern of Facial Expression in Toddlers with Autism.” Autism Res, September 14, 2020. https://doi.org/10.1002/aur.2391.

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Major, Samantha, Kathleen Campbell, Steven Espinosa, Jeffrey P. Baker, Kimberly Lh Carpenter, Guillermo Sapiro, Saritha Vermeer, and Geraldine Dawson. “Impact of a digital Modified Checklist for Autism in Toddlers-Revised on likelihood and age of autism diagnosis and referral for developmental evaluation.” Autism, May 28, 2020, 1362361320916656. https://doi.org/10.1177/1362361320916656.

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Dawson, Geraldine, Kathleen Campbell, Jordan Hashemi, Steven J. Lippmann, Valerie Smith, Kimberly Carpenter, Helen Egger, et al. “Author Correction: Atypical postural control can be detected via computer vision analysis in toddlers with autism spectrum disorder.” Sci Rep 10, no. 1 (January 14, 2020): 616. https://doi.org/10.1038/s41598-020-57570-1.

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Campbell, Kathleen, Kimberly Lh Carpenter, Jordan Hashemi, Steven Espinosa, Samuel Marsan, Jana Schaich Borg, Zhuoqing Chang, et al. “Computer vision analysis captures atypical attention in toddlers with autism.” Autism 23, no. 3 (April 2019): 619–28. https://doi.org/10.1177/1362361318766247.

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Sterwald, Christopher, and Jeffrey Baker. “Frosted Intellectuals: How Dr. Leo Kanner Constructed the Autistic Family.” Perspect Biol Med 62, no. 4 (2019): 690–709. https://doi.org/10.1353/pbm.2019.0040.

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Dawson, Geraldine, Kathleen Campbell, Jordan Hashemi, Steven J. Lippmann, Valerie Smith, Kimberly Carpenter, Helen Egger, et al. “Atypical postural control can be detected via computer vision analysis in toddlers with autism spectrum disorder.” Sci Rep 8, no. 1 (November 19, 2018): 17008. https://doi.org/10.1038/s41598-018-35215-8.

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Hashemi, J., G. Dawson, K. L. H. Carpenter, K. Campbell, Q. Qiu, S. Espinosa, S. Marsan, J. P. Baker, H. L. Egger, and G. Sapiro. “Computer Vision Analysis for Quantification of Autism Risk Behaviors.” Ieee Transactions on Affective Computing, August 31, 2018. https://doi.org/10.1109/TAFFC.2018.2868196.

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Baker, Jeffrey P. “History Lesson: Vaccine Trials in the Classroom.” Am J Public Health 108, no. 8 (August 2018): 976–77. https://doi.org/10.2105/AJPH.2018.304538.

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Egger, Helen L., Geraldine Dawson, Jordan Hashemi, Kimberly L. H. Carpenter, Steven Espinosa, Kathleen Campbell, Samuel Brotkin, et al. “Automatic emotion and attention analysis of young children at home: a ResearchKit autism feasibility study.” Npj Digit Med 1 (2018): 20. https://doi.org/10.1038/s41746-018-0024-6.

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Baker, Jeffrey P., and Birgit Lang. “Eugenics and the Origins of Autism.” Pediatrics 140, no. 2 (August 2017). https://doi.org/10.1542/peds.2017-1419.

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