After experiencing the SARS outbreak in 2003, Hong Kong, Singapore, and Taiwan all invested in various techniques to mitigate future pandemics involving myriad cross-species interactions between humans and birds. In some locations microbiologists allied with veterinarians and birdwatchers to follow the mutations of flu viruses in birds and humans and create preparedness strategies, while in others, public health officials worked toward preventing pandemics by killing thousands of birds. In Avian Reservoirs Frédéric Keck offers a comparative analysis of these responses, tracing how the anticipation of bird flu pandemics has changed relations between birds and humans in China. Drawing on anthropological theory and ethnographic fieldwork, Keck demonstrates that varied strategies dealing with the threat of pandemics—stockpiling vaccines and samples in Taiwan, simulating pandemics in Singapore, and monitoring viruses and disease vectors in Hong Kong—reflect local geopolitical relations to mainland China. In outlining how interactions among pathogens, birds, and humans shape the way people imagine future pandemics, Keck illuminates how interspecies relations are crucial for protecting against such threats.
Investigations of skeletal remains from key archaeological sites reveal new data and offer insights on prehistoric life and health in the
The shift from foraging to farming had important health consequences for prehistoric peoples, but variations in health existed
within communities that had made this transition. This new collection draws on the rich bioarchaeological record of the Southeastern United States
to explore variability in health and behavior within the age of agriculture. It offers new perspectives on human adaptation to various geographic and
cultural landscapes across the entire Southeast, from Texas to Virginia, and presents new data from both classic and little-known sites.
The contributors question the reliance on simple cause-and-effect relationships in human health and behavior by addressing such key bioarchaeological issues as disease history and epidemiology, dietary composition and sufficiency, workload stress, patterns of violence, mortuary practices, and biological consequences of European contact. They also advance our understanding of agriculture by showing that uses of maize were more varied than has been previously supposed.
Representing some of the best work being done today by physical anthropologists, this volume provides new insights into human adaptation for both archaeologists and osteologists. It attests to the heterogeneous character of Southeastern societies during the late prehistoric and early historic periods while effectively detailing the many factors that have shaped biocultural evolution.
Contributors include: Patricia S. Bridges, Elizabeth Monaham Driscoll, Debra L. Gold, Dale L. Hutchinson, Keith P. Jacobi, Patricia M. Lambert, Clark Spencer Larsen, Lynette Norr, Mary Lucas Powell, Marianne Reeves, Lisa Sattenspiel, Margaret J. Schoeninger, Mark R. Schurr, Leslie E. Sering, David S. Weaver, and Matthew A. Williamson
Mao Zedong’s Great Leap Forward campaign organized millions of Chinese peasants into communes in a misguided attempt to rapidly collectivize agriculture with disastrous effects. Catastrophic famine lingered as the global cholera pandemic of the early 1960s spread rampantly through the infected waters of southeastern coastal China. Confronted with a political crisis and the seventh global cholera pandemic in recorded history, the communist government committed to social restructuring in order to affirm its legitimacy and prevent transmission of the disease. Focusing on the Wenzhou Prefecture in Zhejiang Province, the area most seriously stricken by cholera at the time, Xiaoping Fang demonstrates how China’s pandemic was far more than a health incident; it became a significant social and political influence during a dramatic transition for the People’s Republic.
China and the Cholera Pandemic reveals how disease control and prevention, executed through the government’s large-scale, clandestine anticholera campaign, were integral components of its restructuring initiatives, aimed at restoring social order. The subsequent rise of an emergency disciplinary health state furthered these aims through quarantine and isolation, which profoundly impacted the social epidemiology of the region, dividing Chinese society and reinforcing hierarchies according to place, gender, and socioeconomic status.
Cholera was the classic epidemic disease of the nineteenth century, as the plague had been for the fourteenth. Its defeat was a reflection not only of progress in medical knowledge but of enduring changes in American social thought. Rosenberg has focused his study on New York City, the most highly developed center of this new society. Carefully documented, full of descriptive detail, yet written with an urgent sense of the drama of the epidemic years, this narrative is as absorbing for general audiences as it is for the medical historian. In a new Afterword, Rosenberg discusses changes in historical method and concerns since the original publication of The Cholera Years.
"A major work of interpretation of medical and social thought . . . this volume is also to be commended for its skillful, absorbing presentation of the background and the effects of this dread disease."—I.B. Cohen, New York Times
"The Cholera Years is a masterful analysis of the moral and social interest attached to epidemic disease, providing generally applicable insights into how the connections between social change, changes in knowledge and changes in technical practice may be conceived."—Steven Shapin, Times Literary Supplement
"In a way that is all too rarely done, Rosenberg has skillfully interwoven medical, social, and intellectual history to show how medicine and society interacted and changed during the 19th century. The history of medicine here takes its rightful place in the tapestry of human history."—John B. Blake, Science
As a public health field worker assigned to control tuberculosis in New York and Chicago in the 1990s, Paul Draus encountered the horrible effects of tuberculosis resurgence in urban areas, and the intersections of disease, blight, and poverty. Consumed in the City grows out of his experiences and offers a persuasive case for thinking about—and treating—tuberculosis as an inseparable component of the scourges of poverty, homelessness, AIDS, and drug abuse. It is impossible, Draus argues, to treat and eliminate tuberculosis without also treating the social ills that underlie the new epidemic. Paul Draus begins by describing his own on-the-job training as a field worker, then places the resurgence of tuberculosis into historical and sociological perspective. He vividly describes his experiences in hospital rooms, clinics, jails, housing projects, urban streets, and other social settings where tuberculosis is often encountered and treated. Using case studies, he demonstrates how social problems affect the success or failure of actual treatment. Finally, Draus suggests how a reformed public health agenda could help institute the changes required to defeat a deadly new epidemic. At once a personal account and a concrete plan for rethinking the role of public health, Consumed in the City marks a significant intervention in the way we think about the entangled crises of urban dislocation, poverty, and disease.
With unprecedented speed, scientists have raced to develop vaccines to bring the COVID-19 pandemic under control and restore a sense of normalcy to our lives. Despite the havoc and disruption the pandemic has caused, it’s exposed exactly why we should not return to life as we once knew it. Our current profit-driven healthcare systems have exacerbated global inequality and endangered public health, and we must take this opportunity to construct a new social order that understands public health as a basic human right.
A COVID Charter, A Better World outlines the steps needed to reform public policies and fix the structural vulnerabilities that the current pandemic has made so painfully clear. Leading scholar Toby Miller argues that we must resist neoliberalism’s tendency to view health in terms of individual choices and market-driven solutions, because that fails to preserve human rights. He addresses the imbalance of geopolitical power to explain how we arrived at this point and shows that the pandemic is more than just a virus—it’s a social disease. By examining how the U.S., Britain, Mexico, and Colombia have responded to the COVID-19 crisis, Miller investigates corporate, scientific, and governmental decision-making and the effects those decisions have had on disadvantaged local communities. Drawing from human rights charters ratified by various international organizations, he then proposes a COVID charter, calling for a new world that places human lives above corporate profits.
Only a few decades ago, we were ready to declare victory over infectious diseases. Today, infectious diseases are responsible for significant morbidity and mortality throughout the world. This book examines the epidemiology and social impact of past and present infectious disease epidemics in the developing and developed world. In the introduction, the authors define global health as a discipline, justify its critical importance in the modern era, and introduce the Millennium Development Goals, which have become critical targets for most of the developing world. The first half of the volume provides an epidemiological overview, exploring early and contemporary perspectives on disease and disease control. An analysis of nutrition, water, and sanitation anchors the discussion of basic human needs. Specific diseases representing both “loud” and “silent” emergencies are investigated within broader structures of ecological and biological health such as economics, education, state infrastructure, culture, and personal liberty. The authors also examine antibiotic resistance, AIDS, malaria, tuberculosis, and pandemic influenza, and offer an epilogue on diseases of affluence, which now threaten citizens of countries both rich and poor. A readable guide to specific diseases, richly contextualized in environment and geography, this book will be used by health professionals in all disciplines interested in global health and its history and as a textbook in university courses on global health.
This is the first history of epidemics in South Africa, lethal episodes that significantly shaped this society over three centuries. Focusing on five devastating diseases between 1713 and today—smallpox, bubonic plague, “Spanish influenza,” polio, and HIV/AIDS—the book probes their origins, their catastrophic courses, and their consequences in both the short and long terms. The impacts of these epidemics ranged from the demographic—the “Spanish flu,” for instance, claimed the lives of 6 percent of the country’s population in six weeks—to the political, the social, the economic, the spiritual, the psychological, and the cultural. Moreover, as each of these epidemics occurred at crucial moments in the country’s history—such as during the South African War and World War I—the book also examines how these processes affected and were affected by the five epidemics. To those who read this book, history will not look the same again.
After the great pandemic of 1348, the plague became endemic in Europe, affecting life at every level for more than three hundred years. In attempting to fight the dread enemy, the North Italian states had developed, by the early sixteenth century, a highly sophisticated system of public health. Special permanent magistracies combining legislative and executive powers were established to administer all public health matters.
In this volume, Carlo M. Cipolla throws new light on the subject, utilizing newly uncovered and significant archival material.
In the first essay, the author analyzes the complex set of interrelationships that existed between theory and practice in Renaissance epidemiology. The significance of this essay goes beyond the history of public health and extends to the larger history of science.
In the second essay, Cipolla studies a case in which health matters became the object of intense diplomatic activity. In that instance, fully sovereign states envisaged interstate controls and relinquished discretionary powers for the sake of the “common health.” Although the concerted effort was short-lived, it does represent an attempt at international health cooperation that was unmatched for another two centuries, until the first International Sanitary Conference, held in Paris in 1851.
In the third essay, unusually detailed statistical documentation allows the author to analyze in detail the demographic, economic, and social aspects of the fight against the plague in a Tuscan city—Pistoia—during the epidemic of 1630–31.
A richly documented appendix, forming an essay in itself, illustrates present knowledge of the clinical, pathological, and epidemiological features of the plague in the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries in Europe.
Sana Loue explores the concepts of legal and epidemiological causation, the use of epidemiological data based on populations to determine causation in an individual case, and the use of epidemiological evidence in litigation, including the reliance on experts and expert witnesses.
Loue provides a guide for the attorney with little or no background in epidemiological theory and for the epidemiologist contemplating a new role as an expert witness. She assumes of her readers a working knowledge of the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure and the Federal Rules of Evidence.
Discussing the epidemiologist as expert witness, Loue covers the nature of that testimony, the purpose of the testimony, and the qualifications necessary to be regarded as an expert witness. She examines various legal theories of causation, primarily in the context of product liability and toxic tort, and addresses epidemiological principles and methods used in the process of causal inference.
Loue also focuses on legal mechanisms used to assess causation. Her concern here is with depositions and testimony and the preparation of epidemiology experts. She concludes her study by comparing the legal and epidemiological concepts of causation, using actual legal cases as examples.
Throughout the text, Loue incorporates excerpts from depositions, interrogatories, and trial testimony to provide concrete examples. She also sets up an appendix to provide nonattorney readers with an overview of the legal system. Ultimately, her goal is to foster a greater understanding between law and epidemiology.
Cindy Patton University of Minnesota Press, 2002 Library of Congress RA643.8.P38 2002 | Dewey Decimal 362.1969792
A long-awaited look at responses to the AIDS epidemic in relation to globalization.
As AIDS began to appear around the "global village" in the early 1980s, the closeness brought by new technologies no longer promised wondrous cultural exchange; instead it made possible the transmission of a frightening new kind of disease. International scientific institutions and news organizations quickly constructed a "place" for AIDS in the global imaginary: from the heart of Africa and gay bathhouses in San Francisco to the back streets of Southeast Asia and poverty-stricken neighborhoods in the United States. Such simplistic accounts helped recycle racist ideas about Africans and Asians, intensified homophobic visions of irresponsible gay sexuality, and ignored the scientific and human reality of local experiences of the epidemic.
In Globalizing AIDS, pioneering cultural critic Cindy Patton looks at the complex interaction between modern science, media coverage, and local activism during the first decade of the epidemic. Patton's critique of both the production of scientific credibility and the implementation of public health policy at the local level offers a bold reevaluation of how we think about AIDS and an innovative approach to the reality of the disease.
Cindy Patton is a Winship Distinguished Researcher at Emory University. She is the author of Fatal Advice (1996) and Inventing AIDS (1990).
This new collection of essays on HIV viruses spans disciplines to topple popular narratives about the origins of the AIDS pandemic and the impact of the disease on public health policy.
With a death toll in the tens of millions, the AIDS pandemic was one of the worst medical disasters of the past century. The disease was identified in 1981, at the height of miraculous postwar medical achievements, including effective antibiotics, breakthrough advances in heart surgery and transplantations, and cheap, safe vaccines—smallpox had been eradicated just a few years earlier. Arriving as they did during this era of confidence in modern medicine, the HIV epidemics shook the public’s faith in health science. Despite subsequent success in identifying, testing, and treating AIDS, the emergence of epidemics and outbreaks of Ebola, Zika, and the novel coronaviruses (SARS and COVID-19) are stark reminders that such confidence in modern medicine is not likely to be restored until the emergence of these viruses is better understood.
This collection combines the work of major social science and humanities scholars with that of virologists and epidemiologists to provide a broader understanding of the historical, social, and cultural circumstances that produced the pandemic. The authors argue that the emergence of the HIV viruses and their epidemic spread were not the result of a random mutation but rather broader new influences whose impact depended upon a combination of specific circumstances at different places and times. The viruses emerged and were transmitted according to population movement and urbanization, changes in sexual relations, new medical procedures, and war. In this way, the AIDS pandemic was not a chance natural occurrence, but a human-made disaster.
Essays by: Ernest M. Drucker, Tamara Giles-Vernick, Ch. Didier Gondola, Guillaume Lachenal, Amandine Lauro, Preston A. Marx, Stephanie Rupp, François Simon, Jorge Varanda
This first extensive study of the practice of blood transfusion in Africa traces the history of one of the most important therapies in modern medicine from the period of colonial rule to independence and the AIDS epidemic. The introduction of transfusion held great promise for improving health, but like most new medical practices, transfusion needed to be adapted to the needs of sub-Saharan Africa, for which there was no analogous treatment in traditional African medicine.
This otherwise beneficent medical procedure also created a “royal road” for microorganisms, and thus played a central part in the emergence of human immune viruses in epidemic form. As with more developed health care systems, blood transfusion practices in sub-Saharan Africa were incapable of detecting the emergence of HIV. As a result, given the wide use of transfusion, it became an important pathway for the initial spread of AIDS. Yet African health officials were not without means to understand and respond to the new danger, thanks to forty years of experience and a framework of appreciating long-standing health risks. The response to this risk, detailed in this book, yields important insight into the history of epidemics and HIV/AIDS.
Drawing on research from colonial-era governments, European Red Cross societies, independent African governments, and directly from health officers themselves, this book is the only historical study of the practice of blood transfusion in Africa.
An 1865 report on public health in New York painted a grim picture of "high brick blocks and closely-packed houses . . . literally hives of sickness" propagating epidemics of cholera, smallpox, typhoid, typhus, and yellow fever, which swept through the whole city. In this stimulating collection of essays, nine historians of American medicine explore New York's responses to its public health crises from colonial times to the present. The essays illustrate the relationship between the disease environment of New York and changes in housing, population, social conditions, and the success of medical science, linking such factors to New York's experiences with smallpox, polio, and AIDS.
The volume is essential reading for anyone interested in American public health and the social history of New York.
The contributors are Ronald Bayer, Elizabeth Blackmar, Gretchen A. Condran, Elizabeth Fee, Daniel M. Fox, Evelynn M. Hammonds, Alan M. Kraut, Judith Walzer Leavitt, and Naomi Rogers. David Rosner is a professor of history at Baruch College and The Graduate School of the City University of New York. Robert R. Macdonald is the director of the Museum of the City of New York.
A publication of the Museum of the City of New York
Choice Reviews 1995 November
This is one of a series of books focusing on the impact of disease intended to enhance the understanding of both past and present regarding reactions to periodic epidemics. Robert B. Macdonald, director of the Museum of the City of New York, which supports this series, states: "The individual and collective responses to widespread sickness are mirrors to the cultural, religious, economic, political, and social histories of cities and nations." Rosner selected eight renowned and respected individuals to describe the reactions and responses to smallpox, polio, and AIDS epidemics in New York City since 1860, and the efforts of officials and professionals to deal with the impact of disease. Essayists present disease broadly from economic, social, political, and health perspectives. Causes of epidemics include the expected and usual: thousands of immigrants pouring into the city, inadequate water and food supplies, lack of sewage disposal, unemployment leading to poverty. An unexpected cause was the avarice of real estate investors, inexorably driving up housing costs.
Highly recommended for all students of history, public health, health policy, and sociology. Upper-division undergraduate through professional. Copyright 1999 American Library Association
Through the ages, rabies has exemplified the danger of diseases that transfer from wild animals to humans and their domestic stock. In South Africa, rabies has been on the rise since the latter part of the twentieth century despite the availability of postexposure vaccines and regular inoculation campaigns for dogs.
In Mad Dogs and Meerkats: A History of Resurgent Rabies in Southern Africa, Karen Brown links the increase of rabies to the HIV/AIDS epidemic. Her study shows that the most afflicted regions of South Africa have seen a dangerous rise in feral dog populations as people lack the education, means, or will to care for their pets or take them to inoculation centers. Most victims are poor black children. Ineffective disease control, which in part depends on management policies in neighboring states and the diminished medical and veterinary infrastructures in Zimbabwe, has exacerbated the problem.
This highly readable book is the first study of rabies in Africa, tracing its history in South Africa and neighboring states from 1800 to the present and showing how environmental and economic changes brought about by European colonialism and global trade have had long-term effects.
Mad Dogs and Meerkats is recommended for public health policy makers and anyone interested in human-animal relations and how societies and governments have reacted to one of the world’s most feared diseases.
A sweeping global history that looks beyond European urban centers to show how slavery, colonialism, and war propelled the development of modern medicine.
Most stories of medical progress come with ready-made heroes. John Snow traced the origins of London’s 1854 cholera outbreak to a water pump, leading to the birth of epidemiology. Florence Nightingale’s contributions to the care of soldiers in the Crimean War revolutionized medical hygiene, transforming hospitals from crucibles of infection to sanctuaries of recuperation. Yet histories of individual innovators ignore many key sources of medical knowledge, especially when it comes to the science of infectious disease.
Reexamining the foundations of modern medicine, Jim Downs shows that the study of infectious disease depended crucially on the unrecognized contributions of nonconsenting subjects—conscripted soldiers, enslaved people, and subjects of empire. Plantations, slave ships, and battlefields were the laboratories in which physicians came to understand the spread of disease. Military doctors learned about the importance of air quality by monitoring Africans confined to the bottom of slave ships. Statisticians charted cholera outbreaks by surveilling Muslims in British-dominated territories returning from their annual pilgrimage. The field hospitals of the Crimean War and the US Civil War were carefully observed experiments in disease transmission.
The scientific knowledge derived from discarding and exploiting human life is now the basis of our ability to protect humanity from epidemics. Boldly argued and eye-opening, Maladies of Empire gives a full account of the true price of medical progress.
In the face of conflicting claims about some treatments, behaviors, and policies, the question arises: What is the most scientifically rigorous way to draw conclusions about cause and effect in the study of humans? In this introduction to causal inference, Paul Rosenbaum explains key concepts and methods through real-world examples.
An award-winning genetic researcher and a tenacious journalist examine each phase of the Ebola epidemic in West Africa, the largest and deadliest of its kind. Their postmortem identifies factors that kept key information from reaching doctors, complicated the government’s response to the crisis, and left responders unprepared for the next outbreak.
A Choice Outstanding Academic Title of the Year
“A critical, poignant postmortem of the epidemic.”
“Forceful and instructive…Sabeti and Salahi uncover competition, sabotage, fear, blame, and disorganization bordering on chaos, features that are seen in just about any lethal epidemic.”
—Paul Farmer, cofounder of Partners in Health
“The central theme of the book…is that common threads of dysfunction run through responses to epidemics…The power of Outbreak Culture is its universality.”
“Sabeti and Salahi present a wealth of evidence supporting the imperative that outbreak response must operate in a coordinated, real-time manner.”
As we saw with the Ebola outbreak—and the disastrous early handling of the COVID-19 coronavirus pandemic—a lack of preparedness, delays, and system-wide problems with the distribution of critical medical supplies can have deadly consequences. Yet after every outbreak, the systems put in place to coordinate emergency responses are generally dismantled.
One of America’s top biomedical researchers, Dr. Pardis Sabeti, and her Pulitzer Prize–winning collaborator, Lara Salahi, argue that these problems are built into the ecosystem of our emergency responses. With an understanding of the path of disease and insight into political psychology, they show how secrecy, competition, and poor coordination plague nearly every major public health crisis and reveal how much more could be done to safeguard the well-being of caregivers, patients, and vulnerable communities. A work of fearless integrity and unassailable authority, Outbreak Culture seeks to ensure that we make some urgently needed changes before the next pandemic.
A history of epidemic illness and political change, The Politics of Disease Control focuses on epidemics of sleeping sickness (human African trypanosomiasis) around Lake Victoria and Lake Tanganyika in the early twentieth century as well as the colonial public health programs designed to control them. Mari K. Webel prioritizes local histories of populations in the Great Lakes region to put the successes and failures of a widely used colonial public health intervention—the sleeping sickness camp—into dialogue with African strategies to mitigate illness and death in the past.
Webel draws case studies from colonial Burundi, Tanzania, and Uganda to frame her arguments within a zone of vigorous mobility and exchange in eastern Africa, where African states engaged with the Belgian, British, and German empires. Situating sleeping sickness control within African intellectual worlds and political dynamics, The Politics of Disease Control connects responses to sleeping sickness with experiences of historical epidemics such as plague, cholera, and smallpox, demonstrating important continuities before and after colonial incursion. African strategies to mitigate disease, Webel shows, fundamentally shaped colonial disease prevention programs in a crucial moment of political and social change.
In recent years, issues of infection prevention and control, patient safety, and quality-of-care have become increasingly prominent in healthcare facilities. Practical Healthcare Epidemiology takes a practical, hands-on approach to these issues, addressing all aspects of infection surveillance and prevention in clear, straightforward terms. This fully revised third edition brings together the expertise of more than fifty leaders in healthcare epidemiology who provide clear, sound guidance on infection prevention and control for the full range of patients in all types of healthcare facilities, including those in settings with limited resources. A powerful resource for practitioners in any branch of medicine or public health who are involved in infection prevention and control, whether they are experienced in healthcare epidemiology or new to the field.
“A handy desk reference and an up-to-date primer for trainees and experts alike” —The Journal of the American Medical Association
“An essential for anyone in the field.”—Thomas R. Talbot, Chief Hospital Epidemiologist, Vanderbilt University Medical Center
Ever since their arrival in North America, European colonists and their descendants have struggled to explain the epidemics that decimated native populations. Century after century, they tried to understand the causes of epidemics, the vulnerability of American Indians, and the persistence of health disparities. They confronted their own responsibility for the epidemics, accepted the obligation to intervene, and imposed social and medical reforms to improve conditions. In Rationalizing Epidemics, David Jones examines crucial episodes in this history: Puritan responses to Indian depopulation in the seventeenth century; attempts to spread or prevent smallpox on the Western frontier in the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries; tuberculosis campaigns on the Sioux reservations from 1870 until 1910; and programs to test new antibiotics and implement modern medicine on the Navajo reservation in the 1950s. These encounters were always complex. Colonists, traders, physicians, and bureaucrats often saw epidemics as markers of social injustice and worked to improve Indians' health. At the same time, they exploited epidemics to obtain land, fur, and research subjects, and used health disparities as grounds for "civilizing" American Indians. Revealing the economic and political patterns that link these cases, Jones provides insight into the dilemmas of modern health policy in which desire and action stand alongside indifference and inaction.
Table of Contents:
List of Figures Acknowledgments
Introduction 1. Expecting Providence 2. Meanings of Depopulation 3. Frontiers of Smallpox 4. Using Smallpox 5. Race to Extinction 6. Impossible Responsibilities 7. Pursuit of Efficacy 8. Experiments at Many Farms Epilogue and Conclusions
Rationalizing Epidemics is a superb work of scholarship. By contextualizing his deep and thorough research in original documents within the larger literature on the history and nature of epidemics, Jones has produced a profound account of how epidemics are social and cultural phenomena, not just biological. This book will be of great interest to scholars of American Indian history and the history of medicine, and with its engaging and accessible writing style, it promises to be a book that students and the general public will appreciate as well. --Nancy Shoemaker, University of Connecticut
An imaginative and insightful approach to health and disease among American Indians, Rationalizing Epidemics represents a remarkable accomplishment. The breadth of reading and depth of research, the subtlety used in explaining each case, and the original approach to the material are altogether impressive. Jones's book undoubtedly will be a major contribution to American history. --Daniel H. Usner, Jr., Vanderbilt University
A North Carolina woman dies of a flesh-eating bacterial disease. Thousands of people in West Africa are suffering from cholera. And antibiotics are rapidly becoming less and less effective at fighting what were once mild infections. The biggest threat to the future of human society may not be terrorist attacks or nuclear war, but rather microscopic bacteria. Immunologist Norbert Gualde explains in Resistance the dangers we face from bacterial resistance, asserting that we must confront the reality awaiting us--the next fatal plague may occur sooner than we think.
Over the course of the twentieth century, incredible advances in medicine inspired a utopian belief among many that all common infectious diseases would eventually be eradicated. But Resistance shows that this dream is an impossible one. The book’s riveting narrative reveals how new infectious agents and diseases are being discovered every day and how bacteria previously thought to have been destroyed are returning with a vengeance. Drawing upon the history of past epidemics, Gualde explores how new outbreaks might be predicted and controlled. He also investigates the potentially devastating social and political impact of such public health disasters, particularly in underdeveloped countries in the southern hemisphere. He ultimately argues that the constant interaction between man and microorganisms will inevitably catalyze future epidemics similar to the horrific ones of centuries past.
Global outbreak monitoring and medical research on the human body’s immune system are beginning to produce effective strategies against bacterial resistance. But the most important weapon is awareness of the crisis, and this engrossing and brilliantly translated study will serve as a wake-up call for us all.
Saturday Is for Funerals
Unity Dow Harvard University Press, 2011 Library of Congress RA643.86.B55D69 2010 | Dewey Decimal 614.599392009688
In the year 2000 the World Health Organization estimated that 85 percent of fifteen-year-olds in Botswana would eventually die of AIDS. In Saturday Is for Funerals we learn why that won't happen.
Unity Dow and Max Essex tell the true story of lives ravaged by AIDS—of orphans, bereaved parents, and widows; of families who devote most Saturdays to the burial of relatives and friends. We witness the actions of community leaders, medical professionals, research scientists, and educators of all types to see how an unprecedented epidemic of death and destruction is being stopped in its tracks.
This book describes how a country responded in a time of crisis. In the true-life stories of loss and quiet heroism, activism and scientific initiatives, we learn of new techniques that dramatically reduce rates of transmission from mother to child, new therapies that can save lives of many infected with AIDS, and intricate knowledge about the spread of HIV, as well as issues of confidentiality, distributive justice, and human rights. The experiences of Botswana offer practical lessons along with the critical element of hope.
West Nile Virus -- Mad Cow Disease -- HIV/AIDS -- Hantavirus -- Lyme Disease ... and a new strain of Salmonella. Such modern epidemics have emerged over the past few decades as mysterious, yet significant risks to human health. These "plagues" are forcing us to modify our lifestyles in ways that minimize our chances of becoming a statistic in the latest tally of the afflicted.
In Six Modern Plagues, Mark Jerome Walters offers us the first book for the general reader that connects these emerging health risks and their ecological origins. Drawing on new research, interviews, and his own investigations, Mark Jerome Walters weaves together a compelling argument: that changes humans have made to the environment, from warming the climate to clearing the forests, have contributed to, if not caused a rising tide of diseases that are afflicting humans and many other species.
According to Mark Jerome Walters, humans are not always innocent bystanders to infectious disease. To the contrary, in the case of many modern epidemics, we are the instigators. Six Modern Plagues, a ground-breaking introduction to the connection between disease and environmental degradation should be read by all those interested in their health and the health of others.
In The White Plague, René and Jean Dubos argue that the great increase of tuberculosis was intimately connected with the rise of an industrial, urbanized society and—a much more controversial idea when this book first appeared forty years ago—that the progress of medical science had very little to do with the marked decline in tuberculosis in the twentieth century.
The White Plague has long been regarded as a classic in the social and environmental history of disease. This reprint of the 1952 edition features new introductory writings by two distinguished practitioners of the sociology and history of medicine. David Mechanic's foreword describes the personal and intellectual experience that shaped René Dubos's view of tuberculosis. Barbara Gutmann Rosenkrantz's historical introduction reexamines The White Plague in light of recent work on the social history of tuberculosis. Her thought-provoking essay pays particular attention to the broader cultural and medical assumptions about sickness and sick people that inform a society’s approach to the conquest of disease.