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Global History of Pandemics

An image of an advertisement from the late 19th century for Lawrence & Martin's Tolu Rock and Rye as a cure for illnesses and diseases

Germs have spread globally due to human contact and still continue to play a critical role in shaping global politics. In fact, the most common vectors of epidemic diseases are humans. This course will help us understand how studying the history of major epidemics is crucial in understanding the present day structuring of health care policies and public health programs. The different diseases covered are the bubonic plague, smallpox, influenza, cholera, tuberculosis, and AIDS. Following the trail of these germs, we will not only study economic, religious, and socio-political changes, but also study how they actively contributed to globalization.

Department of History, Queen's University

49 Bader Lane, Watson Hall 212
Kingston ON K7L 3N6




Queen's University is situated on traditional Haudenosaunee and Anishinaabe territory.