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Disease and empire : the health of European troops in the conquest of Africa

Author: Philip D Curtin
Publisher: Cambridge : Cambridge University Press, 1998.
Edition/Format:   Print book : EnglishView all editions and formats
Summary:
Before the nineteenth century, European soldiers serving in the tropics died from disease at a rate several times higher than that of soldiers serving at home. Then, from about 1815 to 1914, the death rates of European soldiers, both those serving at home and abroad, dropped by nearly 90%. But this drop applied mainly to soldiers in barracks. Soldiers on campaign, especially in the tropics, continued to die from  Read more...
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Genre/Form: Military history
Document Type: Book
All Authors / Contributors: Philip D Curtin
ISBN: 0521598354 9780521598354 0521591694 9780521591690
OCLC Number: 1017178651
Description: xiii, 256 p., 16 p. of plates : maps ; 23 cm.
Contents: 1. The West African Disease Background --
2. The March to Magdala --
3. The March to Kumasi --
4. Tropical Conquest in West Africa --
5. Typhoid and the Egyptian Garrison --
6. The Typhoid Campaigns: Northeastern Africa in the 188Os --
7. Madagascar and Omdurman: The Last Campaigns in Eastern Africa --
8. The Anglo-Boer War: The Last of the Typhoid Campaigns.
Responsibility: Philip D. Curtin.

Abstract:

Before the nineteenth century, European soldiers serving in the tropics died from disease at a rate several times higher than that of soldiers serving at home. Then, from about 1815 to 1914, the death rates of European soldiers, both those serving at home and abroad, dropped by nearly 90%. But this drop applied mainly to soldiers in barracks. Soldiers on campaign, especially in the tropics, continued to die from disease at rates as high as ever, in sharp contrast to the drop in barracks death rates. This book examines the practice of military medicine during the conquest of Africa, especially in the 1880s and 1890s. Curtin examines what was done, what was not done, and the impact of doctors' successes and failures on the willingness of Europeans to embark on imperial adventures.

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