By Elizabeth Fee, Daniel M. Fox
The AIDS epidemic has posed extra pressing old questions than the other illness of recent occasions. How have societies answered to epidemics long ago? Why did the sickness emerge whilst and the place it did? How has it unfold between individuals of specific teams? and the way will the previous impact the future—in specific, what does the historical past of scientific technological know-how and public overall healthiness let us know approximately our skill to regulate the epidemic and at last to medication the disease?
Historical equipment of inquiry switch, and those who use those equipment frequently disagree on thought and perform. certainly, the participants to this quantity carry a number of evaluations on debatable historiographic concerns. yet they percentage 3 very important ideas: wary adherence to the "social constructionist" view of prior and current; profound skepticism approximately historicism's inspiration of development; and wariness approximately "presentism," the distortion of the prior by means of seeing it in simple terms from the perspective of the present.
Each of the twelve essays addresses a side of the burdens of heritage throughout the AIDS epidemic. via "burdens" is intended the inescapable importance of occasions some time past for the current. All of those occasions are similar ultimately to the present epidemic and will support make clear the advanced social and cultural responses to the problem of AIDS.
This assortment illuminates current issues at once and forcefully with out sacrificing realization to old element and to the diversities among previous and current events. It reminds us that a few of the matters now being debated—quarantine, exclusion, public wishes and personal rights—have their parallels some time past. this can be a tremendous e-book for social historians and normal readers in addition to for historians of drugs.
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Additional info for AIDS: The Burdens of History
The stranger, the Jew, the ― 58 ― poor, the immigrant—all were victims of discrimination in the cases presented in this chapter, their deviance vindicated by the fact that the epidemics claimed a disproportionate number of casualties among them. Here the parallels to AIDS are not difficult to see. If history has a role to play in the present AIDS crisis, it is to restore public memory about our behavior during past epidemics and to continue to raise questions about the meaning and consequences of disease.
50. Ibid. 49. New York Evening Post , 23 July 1832. 50. Ibid. 51. New York Evening Post , 21 July 1832. 52. Cholera Bulletin 1 (11 July 1832): 17. 53. Atkins, Reports , 116. 54. Charles E. Rosenberg, "The Cause of Cholera: Aspects of Etiological Thought in Nineteenth-Century America," Bulletin of the History of Medicine 34 (1960): 331-354. See also Atkins, Reports , 14-25, and Reese, Epidemic Cholera , 24-25. 55. Reese, Epidemic Cholera , 59. 56. Atkins, Reports , 66. 57. Reese, Epidemic Cholera , 62.
Therefore let men take heed of their company. Henry IV, Part 2 In ancient times citizens noted that, occasionally, a disease from a distant locale was sweeping toward them from neighboring villages, or that after a ship from a foreign land reached shore with ill persons aboard, residents in the port city would take ill. Such temporal sequences could not be ignored and, if the illness were a serious one, fears escalated as the illness came closer. Knowing the cause of an illness or its mode of transmission provides the basis for some rational approach to containing the spread of the disease.
AIDS: The Burdens of History by Elizabeth Fee, Daniel M. Fox