Book ID: CBB175864050

The Politics of Disease Control: Sleeping Sickness in Eastern Africa, 1890–1920 (2019)


Webel, Mari K. (Author)

Ohio University Press

Publication Date: 2019
Physical Details: 272 pp.
Language: English

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.

Reviewed By

Review James Giblin (2021) Review of "The Politics of Disease Control: Sleeping Sickness in Eastern Africa, 1890–1920". Bulletin of the History of Medicine (pp. 426-427). unapi

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Authors & Contributors
Jones, M.
Tilley, Helen
Dickerson, James L.
Axelsson, Per
Huijzendveld, Frans D.
Sabea, Hanan
International Journal of African Historical Studies
Social History of Medicine
Osiris: A Research Journal Devoted to the History of Science and Its Cultural Influences
Asclepio: Archivo Iberoamericano de Historia de la Medicina
Llull: Revista de la Sociedad Española de Historia de las Ciencias y de las Técnicas
Journal of Southern History
Prometheus Books
University of Minnesota
University of Chicago Press
Columbia University
Public health
Prevention and control of disease
Great Britain, colonies
Infectious diseases
Time Periods
20th century, early
19th century
20th century
18th century
20th century, late
21st century
Tanzania (Tanganyika, Zanzibar)
United States
Sri Lanka

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