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Consider two polar images of the same medical condition: the pale and fragile Camille ensconced on a chaise in a Victorian parlor, daintily coughing a small spot of blood onto her white lace pillow, and a wretched poor man in a Bowery flophouse spreading a dread and deadly infection. Now Katherine Ott chronicles how in one century a romantic, ambiguous affliction of the spirit was transformed into a disease that threatened public health and civic order. She persuasively argues that there was no constant identity to the disease over time, no "core" tuberculosis.
What we understand today as pulmonary tuberculosis would have been largely unintelligible to a physician or patient in the late nineteenth century. Although medically the two terms described the same disease of the lungs, Ott shows that "tuberculosis" and "consumption" were diagnosed, defined, and treated distinctively by both lay and professional health workers. Ott traces the shift from the pre-industrial world of 1870, in which consumption was conceived of primarily as a middle-class malaise that conferred virtue, heightened spirituality, and gentility on the sufferer, to the post-industrial world of today, in which tuberculosis is viewed as a microscopic enemy, fought on an urban battleground and attacking primarily the outcast poor and AIDS patients.
Ott's focus is the changing definition of the disease in different historical eras and environments. She explores its external trappings, from the symptoms doctors chose to notice (whether a pale complexion or a tubercle in a dish) to the significance of the economic and social circumstances of the patient. Emphasizing the material culture of disease--medical supplies, advertisements for faraway rest cures, outdoor sick porches, and invalid hammocks--Ott provides insight into people's understanding of illness and how to combat it. Fevered Lives underscores the shifting meanings of consumption/tuberculosis in an extraordinarily readable cultural history.
Dal retro di copertina: [A] riveting account of the changing face of tuberculosis in American culture since 1870. With an ease that belies the depth of her research, Ott reveals how the glamorous middle-class consumptives of the late Victorian era gradually gave way to the impoverished, coughing wretches of this century, disenfranchised in part by germ theory and the hysteria that followed it.-New Scientist
Condizione libro: Used
Descrizione libro Harvard University Press. Paperback. Condizione libro: VERY GOOD. Cover and pages show some wear from reading and storage. May have light creases on the cover and binding. Some pages may contain writing and or highlighting. Codice libro della libreria 2703774268
Descrizione libro Harvard University Press. PAPERBACK. Condizione libro: Good. 0674299116 Item in good condition. Textbooks may not include supplemental items i.e. CDs, access codes etc. Codice libro della libreria Z0674299116Z3
Descrizione libro Harvard University Press, 1999. Condizione libro: Good. N/A. Shows some signs of wear, and may have some markings on the inside. Codice libro della libreria GRP28673081
Descrizione libro Paperback. Condizione libro: Very Good. Codice libro della libreria K-314-394
Descrizione libro Harvard University Press, 1999. Paperback. Condizione libro: New. Codice libro della libreria SONG0674299116
Descrizione libro Harvard University Press, 1999. Paperback. Condizione libro: Very Good. Codice libro della libreria P020674299116
Descrizione libro Harvard University Press, 1999. Paperback. Condizione libro: New. Codice libro della libreria P110674299116
Descrizione libro Harvard University Press, 1999. Paperback. Condizione libro: New. Codice libro della libreria DADAX0674299116