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« Tetanus among Slaves and Free People in Porto Alegre | Main | Tetanus in Brazil »

"Save the Babies" and other historiographical conversations


"One way to address and analyze the impact of Brazil's Era of Epidemics on public policy, overall population welfare, changes in treatments, and other areas of interest is to compare the Brazilian context with the epidemic context of another large country in the Western Hemisphere: the United States. This blog post will summarize existing historiography of U.S. health related to infectious diseases in the second half of the nineteenth century. Since the focus is on infectious diseases with epidemic potential, this review has a more narrow scope than U.S. health historiography generally for the period. Many studies exist on mental health, chronic disease, cancer, heart disease, and other health concerns in the nineteenth century; their exclusion here does not necessarily reflect a small place in the literature. Studies conducted by demographers, geographers, and economic historians also have a big presence in this review because their methodologies often analyze mortality.


Existing research, as may be expected, generally follows the existing sources. Census data years, military records, especially concerning Civil War soldiers, surveys of cities like Philadelphia with early vital statistics record-keeping, and hospital data all dominate the literature on non-slave populations. Slaves welfare has a large place in the historiography which is discussed in detail below. I will begin with a summary of..."

Click here for the rest of this excellent historiography by Glynnis Kirchmeier.

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