Article ID: CBB725291854

Viral Imagery of Dengue Fever in the Age of Bacteriology (2020)


Since the late nineteenth century, the image of the pathogen has embodied the disease it causes—its discovery equated with the discovery of the disease itself. Visualizing a disease-causing organism became key to constructing a distinct, biomedical disease identity. But what of the diseases whose pathogens would not “reveal themselves” to the microscopist? Denied this “ontological” representation, would they not attain this framing? This essay further problematizes the supposed dominance of the laboratory and the microscope in normalizing disease at the turn of the nineteenth and twentieth centuries by examining scientific images produced in the study of dengue fever in Asia. Surveying a range of medical techniques and technologies and their attendant visual productions through the lens of dengue, this essay argues for the importance of alternative scientific imagery in articulating its disease identity about 1900.

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Authors & Contributors
Peckham, Robert
Gradmann, Christoph
Velmet, Aro
Jane Coutts
Kuznetsov, Vyacheslav A.
Cohen, Sara Jo
Science in Context
Journal of Medical Biography
Revue d'Histoire des Sciences
Medizinhistorisches Journal
Medical History
History and Philosophy of the Life Sciences
University of Rochester Press
University of Chicago Press
Pickering & Chatto
Oxford University Press
Hong Kong University Press
Disease and diseases
Public health
Medicine and technology, relationships
Koch, Robert
Cheyne, William Watson (1852-1932)
Garfield, James Abram
Bardakh, Yakov Yulievich (1857–1929)
Löffler, Friedrich
Virchow, Rudolf Carl
Time Periods
19th century
20th century
20th century, early
Institut für Infektionskrankheiten, Berlin
Institut Pasteur, Paris

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