Kathleen Clark

Last revised by Daniel J Bell on 2 Aug 2021

Kathleen "Kitty" C Clark (1896-1968) was a pioneer in the field of radiographic education standardization, authoring the radiographic positioning textbook, ‘Clark's Positioning in Radiography’, a textbook still in print to this day.

Kathleen Clara Clark, otherwise known as ‘Kitty’, completed her radiographic training at Guy’s Hospital, London in 1921, then working at Princess Mary’s Hospital, Margate until she moved to the Royal Northern Hospital, North London. It was at the Royal Northern Hospital that Clarke created a school of radiography. Prior to this, radiography education was not entirely consistent. This school became a standard which other radiography teaching courses could look up to.

1935 saw Kitty Clark co-founding the Ilford Radiographic Department, Tavistock House, London, a department renowned around the world for its high-quality standard of research.

1939 saw the first edition of Clark’s radiography textbook, ‘Clark’s Positioning in Radiography’, often cited as one of the most important textbooks in radiography to date.

This textbook, now in its thirteenth edition (2015), remains in widespread use 2, not only standardized radiographic positioning and exposures, it did so with a style far from the alienating format of scientific literature. Its accessibility, ease of use and overall standardization enabled a higher standard of radiographic education throughout the world.  

Kitty Clarke dedicated a considerable portion of her career to the early detection of tuberculosis via the use of miniature radiography. Subsequently, Clarke published research into the use of x-ray screen photography, a topic that generated considerable interest around the 1940s as a method to screen military personnel for service 3.

Clark published the book ‘Mass Miniature Radiography of Civilians’ in 1945, which became the go-to text on the subject 4.

Clark's work into mass miniature radiography earned her an MBE in 1945 for her service to the profession.

Kathy Clark died on 20 October 1968 after a long illness 5.

  • author of the indispensable Clark’s Positioning in Radiography
  • pioneer in the field of mass miniature radiography, later a heavily utilized tool in the detection of TB

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