Return of the White Plague: Global Poverty and the New Tuberculosis

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The dramatic increase since the 1980s in the global prevalence of tuberculosis, a disease destined as recently as thirty years ago for complete eradication, is a story of medical failure. A pandemic whose geography defies simple categorization, it ranges from schools in the UK to prisons in Russia, from refugee camps in central Africa to affluent suburbs in North America. The ‘new’ tuberculosis is derived from a combination of different developments such as collapsing health-care services, shifting patterns of ...
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Overview

The dramatic increase since the 1980s in the global prevalence of tuberculosis, a disease destined as recently as thirty years ago for complete eradication, is a story of medical failure. A pandemic whose geography defies simple categorization, it ranges from schools in the UK to prisons in Russia, from refugee camps in central Africa to affluent suburbs in North America. The ‘new’ tuberculosis is derived from a combination of different developments such as collapsing health-care services, shifting patterns of poverty and inequality, the spread of HIV, and the emergence of virulent drug-resistant strains.

This collection provides an international survey of current thought on the spread and control of tuberculosis, covering historical, social, political, and medical aspects. While the contributors may differ in their opinions over specific treatments or research methodology, all are agreed on the overriding thesis of the book – that the resurgence of disease is one of the most telling indictments of the failure of global political and economic institutions to improve the lives of ordinary people.

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Editorial Reviews

Mike Davis
“Resurgent TB is one of the nightmare faces of world poverty, a scourge whose principal vector is economic neoliberalism. But, as this brilliant and profoundly disturbing study makes clear, it will inevitably become a death sentence for the rich as well as the poor.”
Michael Worboys
“...A very impressive collection that provides cross-national perspectives on the causes and consequences of the re-emergence of tuberculosis as a major public health problem ... Essential reading for students, academics, medical personnel and health policy makers interested in the problem of TB and other modern plagues.”
World Health Organization
“It is estimated that between 2002 and 2020, approximately 1,000 million people will be newly infected, over 150 million people will get sick, and 36 million people will die of TB.”
From the Publisher
“Resurgent TB is one of the nightmare faces of world poverty, a scourge whose principal vector is economic neoliberalism. But, as this brilliant and profoundly disturbing study makes clear, it will inevitably become a death sentence for the rich as well as the poor.”—Mike Davis

“... A very impressive collection that provides cross-national perspectives on the causes and consequences of the re-emergence of tuberculosis as a major public health problem ... Essential reading for students, academics, medical personnel and health policy makers interested in the problem of TB and other modern plagues.”—Michael Worboys

“It is estimated that between 2002 and 2020, approximately 1,000 million people will be newly infected, over 150 million people will get sick, and 36 million people will die of TB.”—World Health Organization

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781859846698
  • Publisher: Verso Books
  • Publication date: 10/16/2003
  • Pages: 336
  • Product dimensions: 6.40 (w) x 9.50 (h) x 1.25 (d)

Meet the Author

Matthew Gandy teaches geography at University College London and has published widely on urban and environmental issues.

Alimuddin Zumla is the Professor of Infectious Diseases and International Health at the Royal Free and University College Medical School.

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Table of Contents

Prologue: The Return of Old Diseases and the Appearance of New Ones 1
Introduction 7
1 Life without Germs: Contested Episodes in the History of Tuberculosis 15
2 Immigration, Race and Geographies of Difference in the Tuberculosis Pandemic 39
3 Gender and Tuberculosis: A Conceptual Framework for Identifying Gender Inequalities 55
4 War and Disease: Some Perspectives on the Spatial and Temporal Occurrence of Tuberculosis in Wartime 70
5 The Present Global Burden of Tuberculosis 95
6 Tuberculosis and HIV Infection in Sub-Saharan Africa 112
7 The Recent Tuberculosis Epidemic in New York City: Warning from the De-Developing World 125
8 Private Wealth and Public Squalor: The Resurgence of Tuberculosis in London 147
9 The Social Impact of Multi-drug-resistant Tuberculosis: Haiti and Peru 163
10 The House of the Dead Revisited: Prisons, Tuberculosis and Public Health in the Former Soviet Bloc 178
11 Rethinking the Social Context of Illness: Interdisciplinary Approaches to Tuberculosis Control 195
12 Reflections on the Role of Science in Tuberculosis Control 207
13 Global Poverty and Tuberculosis: Implications for Ethics and Human Rights 222
Epilogue: Politics, Science and the 'New' Tuberculosis 237
Notes 243
About the Contributors 303
Resource List 309
Acknowledgements 312
Index 313
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