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Feverish Bodies, Enlightened Minds
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Feverish Bodies, Enlightened Minds: Science and the Yellow Fever Controversy in the Early American Republic

Thomas Apel


From 1793-1805, yellow fever devastated American port cities, killing thousands and prompting a desperate search for its cause. The question of the fever’s origin divided disease investigators into rival camps: “contagionists” thought it came from abroad and could be transmitted from person to person, while “localists” believed it arose from domestically-situated miasmas. Feverish Bodies, Enlightened Minds uses correspondence, newspaper and periodical articles, as well as published fever pamphlets to resurrect the course of the debate and to explore its significance in the history of American ... More

Keywords: early republic history of science and medicine yellow fever common sense contagionist localist miasmatist disease causation

Bibliographic Information

Print publication date: 2016 Print ISBN-13: 9780804797405
Published to Stanford Scholarship Online: January 2017 DOI:10.11126/stanford/9780804797405.001.0001


Affiliations are at time of print publication.

Thomas Apel, author