Epidemics, Continuity and Change

Professor Erica Charters and Professor Mark Harrison
Tuesday, 31 May 2022

This lecture will begin at 5pm, and will be followed by a Q+A. All welcome. Booking is not required for this event. The lecture is part of the Centre's project on Public Health, Science and Technology in Muslim Societies.

Professor Charters and Professor Harrison are associated with the Oxford Centre for the History of Science, Medicine and Technology, as well as the University's Faculty of History. Their lecture will be on the topic of 'Epidemics, Continuity and Change'.

Although most comment on the novelty of epidemics, their history can help to identify continuities as well as ruptures. This talk will outline historical approaches to understanding epidemics, including the process of an epidemic's end.  It reflects briefly on the extent to which pandemics accelerate social and political change, identifying why some appear to have had major repercussions whereas others have not. The talk will conclude by considering whether or not COVID-19 has served as a catalyst for change and, if so, in which respects.