Tropical Diseases is the first book to show how life-threatening diseases have travelled – and continue to travel – to Europe and America from Africa and Asia.
We live in a fool’s paradise, comforted, despite all the evidence to the contrary, that we are isolated and insulated from the microbial and parasitic diseases that so beset tropical climates.
Yet recent history demonstrates clearly that pathogens have no respect for national borders, and that many of the diseases we assume are exclusively tropical actually occur with alarming frequency in developed countries with temperate climates.
• The tug of war between man and his parasites.
• History and science mixed to perfection.
• This book shows how the world has never fitted into neat compartments, and how human migrants from 50,000BC until today have brought dangerous pathogens with them to their new homes.
The final section of the book addresses the potentially catastrophic health problems facing the Third World, and weighs the risk that new ‘doomsday bugs’ will emerge and be transferred to the developed world. This incisive and brilliantly well-written book shows that how we deal with such health threats may well be one of the most sensitive moral and political questions of our time.
"synopsis" may belong to another edition of this title.
‘An eloquent and alarming history of how diseases have hitched their way around the world’
‘A book to buy? Yes, it is interesting and worth reading. I admire Desowitz both for his guts and scholarship’
‘If I ruled the world, Desowitz’s book would be required reading’
Los Angeles Times
“An eloquent and alarming history of how diseases have hitched their way around the world”
ANJANA AHUJA, 'The Times'
“'Tropical Diseases' is a meaty book which ranges widely over the fertile landscape of epidemiology. Its scope is the birth, evolution and transmission of diseases associated with hot countries … So what exactly is a tropical disease? Does it occur only in the tropics? It seems not. Most so-called tropical diseases crop up in places as untropical as Swansea, scene of a virulent malaria outbreak in 1865. “Our world” warns Desowitz “has never been compartmentalised.” 'Tropical Diseases' takes a sprightly course through medical history from 50,000 BC to AD 2500. A heavyweight academic, Desowitz is also a gifted interpreter, always seeking the analogy that brings a scientific concept into the layman’s living room. There is a touch of theatre about his prose and it suits the subject matter. Desowitz is a natural storyteller regaling us with the tale of Columbus’s sailor who noticed hard small lesions on his penis after disporting himself in what was probably the Bahamas in 1492 and went home to spread syphilis throughout Europe. The whole confection is laced with such irresistibly lurid stories.”
SARA WHEELER, 'Sunday Telegraph'
“Among the healing arts, tropical medicine has traditionally claimed a particularly heroic status and the stirring saga of the conquest of tropical diseases is told here with panache. 'Tropical Diseases' is an agreeable read.”
ROY PORTER, 'Literary Review'
“A timely warning that malaria, syphilis and cholera have not gone away. Social upheaval, changing climate, a blind political eye is all they need to return. A book to buy? – yes … it is interesting and worth reading. I admire Desowitz both for his guts and scholarship.”
MYLES HARRIS,'Sunday Express'
"About this title" may belong to another edition of this title.
Book Description Flamingo, 1998. Paperback. Book Condition: New. Bookseller Inventory # P11000654794X