By Jon D. Lee
In a plague of Rumors, Jon D. Lee examines the human reaction to epidemics throughout the lens of the 2003 SARS epidemic. Societies frequently reply to the eruption of sickness via developing tales, jokes, conspiracy theories, legends, and rumors, yet those narratives are usually extra harmful than the illnesses they reference. the data disseminated via them is usually erroneous, incorporating xenophobic causes of the disease's origins and questionable clinical information regarding strength treatments and treatment.
Folklore reviews brings very important and beneficial views to knowing cultural responses to the outbreak of affliction. via this etiological research Lee indicates the similarities among the narratives of the SARS outbreak and the narratives of different modern affliction outbreaks like AIDS and the H1N1 virus. His research means that those affliction narratives don't spring up with new outbreaks or ailments yet are in non-stop stream and are recycled opportunistically. Lee additionally explores even if this predictability of vernacular disorder narratives provides the chance to create counter-narratives published systematically from the govt. or clinical technological know-how to stymie the unwanted effects of the apprehensive rumors that so usually inflame humanity.
With capability for sensible program to public healthiness and health and wellbeing coverage, a pandemic of Rumors could be of curiosity to scholars and students of healthiness, drugs, and folklore.
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Extra resources for An Epidemic of Rumors: How Stories Shape Our Perceptions of Disease
The paramyxovirus belonged to a family of viruses that can cause, among other diseases, measles. The findings reported in Germany and Hong Kong immediately concerned medical staff worldwide, as pneumonia can be a complication of measles (“Timeline for SARS” 2003). On March 20, Hong Kong officials hypothesized that the global spread of SARS may have had its origins in a guest at a local hotel. With this information, epidemiologists traced the illness back to the professor from Guangdong, and thence to China, shifting the focus in the search for the origins of the new disease.
Weeks 12–13 (April 20-May 3) The continuing aggression of SARS led to China facing increasing pressure and criticism over its lack of openness in discussing the disease and revealing pertinent and timely information. In response, the Chinese government promised to be more open and on April 20, reported the number of SARS cases in China as rising from 1,512 to 1,807 and that it had fired the Beijing health minister and mayor (“Timeline for SARS” 2003). A report filed by journalist Dexter Roberts on April 21 does not show evidence of this new openness, however; he quoted a Beijing doctor as saying, “I am not allowed to talk about my country’s public health .
Beijing officials, apparently fearing mass retribution, sent policemen to guard eighty reservoirs around the capital city to protect the drinking water supply from SARS contamination (Foreman 2003b). Hospitals in the capital also suffered after scores of support staff quit their jobs. Their timing couldn’t have been worse, as on May 5, China reported 160 new cases of SARS and 9 new deaths, with no indication that the infection rate was leveling off. In fact, Chinese officials expressed public concern over rural health care resources, especially as migrant workers fled the capital for their hometowns, increasing the possibility of new disease vectors (“Hospitals in China Battle SARS Burden” 2003).