Spitting Blood: The history of tuberculosis

Paperback | February 22, 2015

byHelen Bynum

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Tuberculosis is characterized as a social disease and few have been more inextricably linked with human history. There is evidence from the archaeological record that Mycobacterium tuberculosis and its human hosts have been together for a very long time. The very mention of tuberculosis bringsto mind romantic images of great literary figures pouring out their souls in creative works as their bodies were being decimated by consumption. It is a disease that at various times has had a certain glamour associated with it. From the medieval period to the modern day, Helen Bynum explores the history and development of tuberculosis throughout the world, touching on the various discoveries that have emerged about the disease over time, and focussing on the experimental approaches of Jean-Antoine Villemin (1827-92) andRobert Koch (1842-1910). Bynum also examines the place tuberculosis holds in the popular imagination and its role in various forms of the dramatic arts. The story of tuberculosis since the 1950s is complex, and Bynum describes the picture emerging from the World Health Organization of the difficulties that attended the management of the disease in the developing world. In the meantime, tuberculosis has emerged again in the West, both among the urbanunderclass and in association with a new infection - HIV. The disease has returned with a vengeance - in drug-resistant form. The story of tuberculosis is far from over.

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Tuberculosis is characterized as a social disease and few have been more inextricably linked with human history. There is evidence from the archaeological record that Mycobacterium tuberculosis and its human hosts have been together for a very long time. The very mention of tuberculosis bringsto mind romantic images of great literary f...

Helen Bynum is a freelance historian of medicine and a former researcher for Wellcome. She is the author of Tropical Medicine in the 20th century. Together with Bill Bynum, they have edited the award winning Dictionary of Medical Biography (5 vols).

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Format:PaperbackDimensions:352 pages, 7.72 × 5.08 × 0.01 inPublished:February 22, 2015Publisher:Oxford University PressLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0198727518

ISBN - 13:9780198727514

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Table of Contents

Prologue: George Orwell (1903-1950)1. Ancient Bacteria, Old Diseases2. All With 'A Touch of Consumption'?3. Tubercles, Airs, Waters and Places4. Consumption's Fashionistas5. Consumption becomes Tuberculosis6. Design for Living7. Tuberculosis and the Health of the Race8. Streptomycin and co9. A Job Half DoneEpilogue: 'There is no Dypraxa'

Editorial Reviews

"Excellent survey." --Times Higher Education Supplement