“Everyone knows about the Black Death of the 14th Century; here we are nearly 700 years later, and cultural references to the catastrophe still abound. Arguments still rage, however, about just what kind of disease this was and what brought it about. In this session, we’ll investigate the probable origins and course of this most destructive of medieval pandemics, along with some thoughts about how that same destruction helped lead to a revolution in politics and economics.”
“Malaria is more ‘endemic’ than ‘pandemic’ in its character, but for that very reason it may be the most significant of all maladies in terms of its effects on human history. The presence of slavery in the New World, the American victory in the Revolution and the European conquest of Africa have all been decisively influenced by malaria and its treatment. These are some of the stories we will tell in this session, which concerns a disease that still kills hundreds of thousands of people every year.”
Dr. Daniel Breen is a professor of Legal Studies at Brandeis University. In the past fifteen years, Dr. Breen has a BA from the University of Wisconsin, a JD from the University of Georgia and a PhD in History from Boston College. He has taught at Framingham State University and Newbury College.
In-person and online.