Major influenza pandemics pose a constant threat. As evidenced by recent H5N1 avian flu and novel H1N1, influenza outbreaks can come in close succession, yet differ in their transmission and impact. With accelerated levels of commercial and population mobility, new forms of flu virus can also spread across the globe with unprecedented speed. Responding quickly and adequately to each outbreak becomes imperative on the part of governments and global public health organizations, but the difficulties of doing so are legion. One tool for pandemic planning is analysis of responses to past pandemics that provide insight into productive ways forward. This book investigates past influenza pandemics in light of today's, so as to afford critical insights into possible transmission patterns, experiences, mistakes, and interventions. It explores several pandemics over the past century, from the infamous 1918 Spanish Influenza, the avian flu epidemic of 2003, and the novel H1N1 pandemic of 2009, to lesser-known outbreaks such as the 1889-90 influenza pandemic and the Hong Kong Flu of 1968.
Contributors to the volume examine cases from a wide range of disciplines, including history, sociology, epidemiology, virology, geography, and public health, identifying patterns that cut across pandemics in order to guide contemporary responses to infectious outbreaks.
Foreword. Introduction 1. Globalized Complexity and the Microbial Traffic of New and Emerging Infectious Disease Threats Part 1. Reframing 1918: States, Pandemics, and Public Health 2. Barcelona's Influenza: A Comparison of the 1889-1890 and 1918 Autumn Outbreaks 3. Prevent or Heal, Laisser Faire or Coerce: The Public Health Politics of Influenza in France, 1918-1919 Uses and Misuses of the History of the 1918 Pandemic: Two Integrative Essays Part 2. Epidemiology, Virology, and 20th Century Epidemics 4. Are Influenzas in Southern China Byproducts of its Globalizing Historical Present? 5. Recent Influenza Epidemics and Implications for Contemporary Influenza Research 6. Influenza and the Remaking of Epidemiology, 1918-1960 7.Hong Kong Flu (1968) Revisited 40 Years Later Scientific Influenza Research and the Management of Uncertainty: Contemporary Perspectives Part 3. Governmental and Non-Governmental Institutions and the Politics of Epidemic Management 8. Mobility Restrictions, Isolation, and Quarantine: Historical Perspective on Contemporary Debates 9 .Influenza, Intellectual Property, and Knowledge Sharing: A Recent History 10. Biosecurity in Time of Avian Influenza: Vietnam Epidemics and Ethics: Comparative Insights and Critical Questions for Public Health Planning. Commentaries. Conclusion