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Human Demography and Disease

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Overview

Human Demography and Disease offers an interdisciplinary and integrated perspective on the relationship between historical populations and the dynamics of epidemiological processes. It brings the techniques of time-series analysis and computer matrix modelling to historical demography and geography to extract detailed information concerning the oscillations in births, deaths, migrations and epidemics from parish register and other data series and to build mathematical models of the population cycles. This book presents a new way of studying pre-industrial communities and explores the subtle, and hitherto undetected effects of fluctuating nutritional levels on mortality patterns and the dynamics of infectious diseases. This piece of detective work will be of interest to researchers, teachers and students in the fields of demography, anthropology, historical geography, social history, population biology, public health and epidemiology.

The book contains black-and-white illustrations.

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Editorial Reviews

Journal of the American Medical Association
Scott and Duncan have invented a new kind of telescope for looking into the past, and perhaps understanding the future. The eyepiece of the telescope is modeling. The objective lens is data analysis. To the best of my knowledge, much of what they see with this telescope has not been seen before, with this clarity or at all. There may well be justice to their claim, "We believe that this is the first fully integrated, quantitative study of population dynamics in a human community."
From the Publisher
"This excellent and well-written book addresses longstanding questions in historical demography having to do with the factors that affect population size." American Journal of Human Biology
Doody's Review Service
Reviewer: Deborah Rosenberg, PhD (University of Illinois at Chicago)
Description: This book explores the potential of integrating historical demography, epidemiologic analysis of infectious diseases, and state-of-the-art mathematical modeling to more precisely describe population dynamics.
Purpose: Food production and availability, prices of other essential commodities, weather conditions, population density, and the occurrence of epidemics are jointly considered as factors influencing changes in population size and composition.
Audience: This book is intended for readers from many disciplines, including demography, geography, social history, biology, and epidemiology.
Features: The authors describe the difficulties involved in characterizing population cycles due to the complex interaction between economic, social, and biological factors. These factors are all related to each other and, in addition, are related to fertility rates and age-specific mortality rates in a community. The authors propose time series analysis as a method able to estimate the impact of these complex phenomena, both separately and in combination.
Assessment: The material is quite technical and will appeal, in particular, to those with interest or experience in time series analysis and computer matrix modeling. For those readers whose interest is more in the results than the methods employed, many case studies from pre-industrial England, Wales, and Scotland are provided to illustrate the kind of new information that the methods can yield.

3 Stars from Doody
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780521017695
  • Publisher: Cambridge University Press
  • Publication date: 7/31/2005
  • Pages: 372
  • Product dimensions: 5.98 (w) x 8.98 (h) x 0.83 (d)

Table of Contents

Preface
Conversion table for imperial to metric units
1 Introduction 1
2 Tools for demography and epidemiology 16
3 Identification of population oscillations: a case study 34
4 Density-dependent control and feedback 55
5 Modelling the endogenous oscillations and predictions from time-series analysis 75
6 Cycles in the grain price series 87
7 Interactions of exogenous cycles: a case study 113
8 Mortality crises and the effects of the price of wool 145
9 Modelling epidemics for the demographer: the dynamics of smallpox in London 169
10 Non-linear modelling of the 2-yearly epidemics of smallpox: the genesis of chaos? 189
11 Measles and whooping cough in London 222
12 Integration of the dynamics of infectious diseases with the demography of London 244
13 Smallpox in rural towns in England in the 17th and 18th centuries 270
14 Infectious diseases in England and Wales in the 19th century 303
15 Prospectives - towards a metapopulation study 321
References 335
Index 348
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