By Ken De Bevoise

As waves of epidemic ailment swept the Philippines within the overdue 19th century, a few colonial physicians started to worry that the indigenous inhabitants will be burnt up. Many Filipinos interpreted the contagions as a harbinger of the Biblical Apocalypse. notwithstanding the direct forebodings went unfulfilled, Philippine morbidity and mortality charges have been the world's optimum through the interval 1883-1903. In brokers of Apocalypse, Ken De Bevoise exhibits that these "mourning years" resulted from a conjunction of demographic, monetary, technological, cultural, and political tactics that were construction for hundreds of years. the tale is one in every of accidental results, fraught with tragic irony.De Bevoise makes use of the Philippine case examine to discover the level to which people perform developing their epidemics. analyzing the archival checklist with conceptual suggestions from the health and wellbeing sciences, he units tropical disorder in a historic framework that perspectives humans as interacting with, instead of appearing inside of, their overall setting. The complexity of cause-effect and agency-structure relationships is thereby highlighted. Readers from fields as different as Spanish, American, and Philippine heritage, scientific anthropology, colonialism, diplomacy, Asian stories, and ecology will make the most of De Bevoise's insights into the interdynamics of ancient approaches that attach people and their illnesses.

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Extra resources for Agents of Apocalypse: Epidemic Disease in the Colonial Philippines

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The removal in 1854 of judicial powers from the provincial governors so that they could concentrate their energies on government and development had made little difference. Chinese-Filipino mestizos increasingly owned the productive land, and resident Chinese functioned as middlemen between producers and foreign companies. Then, to compound the problem, the halfcentury of spectacular export-driven economic growth began fluctuating wildly in the 1870s as the dislocation in the world economic system rocked the colonial economy.

No infection requiring transfers between human hosts for survival can maintain itself above the fade-out threshold for long in a static and dispersed population group where the probability of personal interaction is low. Diseases can neither be endemic (constantly present) nor epidemic (excessively prevalent) in a community whose members come in contact too infrequently to keep the chain of transmission alive. 2 Relative size and isolation can also determine the extent of infectious disease within a community, as Fenner’s statement of the principle suggests.

Father Martínez de Zúñiga’s program for development of the interior was representative, calling for vigorous military action against upland peoples, Moro raiders, and outlaws together with a system of new settlements, canals, dikes, and roads. 33 Driving the Moro raiders from interisland waterways was essential. Their depredations on the coasts of Luzon had peaked in the 1750s, but so long as they maintained bases on Mindoro (where they held captives for ransom or for shipment to Jolo), they could roam the Sibuyan Sea and choke commerce between Manila and the Visayas.

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