Epidemics: Hate and Compassion from the Plague of Athens to AIDS (Hardback)Samuel K. Cohn, Jr. (author)
Hardback 656 Pages / Published: 05/04/2018
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By investigating thousands of descriptions of epidemics reaching back before the fifth-century-BCE Plague of Athens to the distrust and violence that erupted with Ebola in 2014, Epidemics challenges a dominant hypothesis in the study of epidemics, that invariably across time and space, epidemics provoked hatred, blaming of the 'other', and victimizing bearers of epidemic diseases, particularly when diseases were mysterious, without known cures or preventive measures, as with AIDS during the last two decades of the twentieth century. However, scholars and public intellectuals, especially post-AIDS, have missed a fundamental aspect of the history of epidemics. Instead of sparking hatred and blame, this study traces epidemics' socio-psychological consequences across time and discovers a radically different picture: that epidemic diseases have more often unified societies across class, race, ethnicity, and religion, spurring self-sacrifice and compassion.
Publisher: Oxford University Press
Number of pages: 656
Weight: 1124 g
Dimensions: 242 x 164 x 42 mm
Epidemics, conceived in the influenza scare of 2009, is in itself a commemoration of all the deadliest plagues to have afflicted our species. ... covering the major infections from 430 BC, through the Black Death (134751) and syphilis (14945), to cholera (1832 onwards), smallpox in nineteenth-century America, plague in India since 1894, yellow fever (Southern USA), and the Great Influenza, with a coda on HIV/AIDS ... Cohn's aim is not just to tell their stories (although there are stories aplenty), but to tell them from a new perspective. * Anne Hardy, Times Literary Supplement *
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