Contact tracing's long, turbulent history holds lessons for COVID-19

Trust in the confidentiality of contact tracing broke down during the AIDS epidemic. Today, it's faltering again.

Ronald Bayer, Professor Sociomedical Sciences, Columbia University • conversation
July 16, 2020 ~10 min

Tags: health covid-19 coronavirus history pandemic surveillance contact-tracing sexually-transmitted-diseases aids syphilis stds

5 ways the world is better off dealing with a pandemic now than in 1918

A century ago, the influenza pandemic killed about 50 million people. Today we are battling the coronavirus pandemic. Are we any better off? Two social scientists share five reasons we have to be optimistic.

Eva Kassens-Noor, Associate Professor, Urban & Regional Planning Program and Global Urban Studies Program, Michigan State University • conversation
June 19, 2020 ~9 min

Tags: influenza covid-19 coronavirus history pandemic vaccines flu quarantine sars-cov-2 1918-flu-pandemic h1n1-influenza us-history swine-flu-pandemic

The cholera outbreak in a Victorian asylum that anticipated the coronavirus crisis in care homes

There is a sad precedent of pandemic disease threatening the residents of care institutions – and of authorities not heeding the dangers.

Chris Wilson, Lecturer in History, University of East Anglia • conversation
May 19, 2020 ~15 min

Tags: covid-19 history cholera in-depth insights-series care-homes

Rewilding: lessons from the medieval Baltic crusades

The Baltic crusades had a long term impact on the local environment – 700 years later, the details of this are clear.

Rowena Banerjea, Postdoctoral Research Assistant, University of Reading • conversation
May 11, 2020 ~8 min

Tags: environment biodiversity history archaeology interdisciplinarity rewilding medieval-history deep-time

Patient zero: why it's such a toxic term

Why we should wash our hands of this unhealthy phrase.

Richard McKay, Wellcome Trust Research Fellow, Department of History and Philosophy of Science, University of Cambridge • conversation
April 1, 2020 ~23 min

Tags:  covid-19  coronavirus  hivaids  history  pandemic  social-stigma

Calling COVID-19 a 'Chinese virus' is wrong and dangerous – the pandemic is global

Emphasizing foreign origins of a disease can have racist connotations and implications for how people understand their own risk of disease.

Mari Webel, Assistant Professor of History, University of Pittsburgh • conversation
March 25, 2020 ~10 min

Tags:  history-of-medicine  infectious-diseases  covid-19  coronavirus  history  ebola  pandemic  rift-valley-fever  wuhan  world-health-organization  sars-cov-2  2019-ncov  epidemics  new-coronavirus  world-health-organization-who  norovirus  wuhan-coronavirus  lassa-fever  cholera  bush-meat  ebola-virus  ebola-virus-disease  rift-valley-fever-virus  ebola-zaire  ebola-blame  covid-19-pandemic

When restaurants close, Americans lose much more than a meal

Restaurants have always been about more than feeding city residents. During the 1918 flu pandemic, they were kept open as sites of social solidarity.

Rebecca L. Spang, Professor of History and Director, Liberal Arts and Management Program (LAMP), Indiana University • conversation
March 20, 2020 ~8 min

Tags:  coronavirus  history  food  coronavirus-2020  france  restaurants  public  1918-flu-pandemic

10 misconceptions about the 1918 flu, the 'greatest pandemic in history'

The so-called 'Spanish flu' didn't actually come from Spain. What else do people often misunderstand about this famous crisis?

Richard Gunderman, Chancellor's Professor of Medicine, Liberal Arts, and Philanthropy, Indiana University • conversation
March 17, 2020 ~9 min

Tags:  influenza  covid-19  coronavirus  history  pandemic  flu  coronavirus-2020  spanish-flu  1918-flu-pandemic  world-war-i

Climate change: how Senegal's colonial history made it more vulnerable

We need to understand colonial histories to understand climate risks.

Nick Bernards, Assistant Professor of Global Sustainable Development, University of Warwick • conversation
March 6, 2020 ~7 min

Tags:  history  agriculture  farming  colonialism  rainfall  peanuts  senegal

Naming the new coronavirus – why taking Wuhan out of the picture matters

While identifying a new disease by its place of origin seems intuitive, history shows that doing so can have serious consequences for the people that live there.

Mari Webel, Assistant Professor of History, University of Pittsburgh • conversation
Feb. 18, 2020 ~9 min

Tags:  history-of-medicine  infectious-diseases  covid-19  coronavirus  history  ebola  rift-valley-fever  wuhan  world-health-organization  2019-ncov  epidemics  new-coronavirus  wuhan-coronavirus  lassa-fever  cholera  ebola-virus  ebola-virus-disease  rift-valley-fever-virus

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