Donnerstag, 15. November 2007

Spanish Influenza in Kenya

During my research for a dissertation on the social and economic impact of the Spanish Influenza Pandemic of 1918-1920 in sub-Saharan Africa I spend two months in Nairobi in the Kenya National Archives. On invitation I gave a paper at the History Department of the University of Nairobi. Copies of the paper were circulated as Staff Seminar Papers.
My research findings from Kenya never got public because my PhD was put on the shelf. I have converted the paper into a pdf document that you can find here.

Bibliographical notation
MUELLER, Juergen D. (1995) :Pattern of reaction to a demographic crisis. The Spanish Influenza pandemic (1918-1919) in sub-Saharan Africa. A research proposal and preliminary regional and comparative findings (University of Nairobi. Department of History. Staff Seminar Paper No. 6). Nairobi, 18 pp.

The pandemic of Spanish Influenza is commonly described as one of the grave global infectious diseases of the 20th Century. Nevertheless there are only few studies on the social and economic impact of this disease. This applies especially for sub-Saharan Africa. New approaches towards a social history of sickness and healing attempt to understand underlying social crises and try to relate major epidemics and pandemics into a context of social, economic and ecological transformations.

As in the case of African rural societies it is said that they have a general susceptibility to crises by external interferences. These vulnerability hypothesis offer an approach for an analysis of the Spanish Influenza in Africa. This research project tries to reconstruct and valuate this pandemic.

In the second part of this paper it is a case study of Kenya based on files and newspapers in the Kenya National Archives in Nairobi.
Keywords: influenza, pandemic, epidemic, mortality, morbidity, vulnerability, medical history, age-set, rika
Regional keywords: East African Protectorate, Kenya, Nairobi, Naivasha, Ukamba, Seyidie, Northern Frontier, Mombasa, Taita, Kikuyu, Kiambu, Meru, Murang'a, Fort Hall, Malindi, Turkana, Ulu, Nakuru, Lamu, Nandi, Kericho, Kavirondo, Machakos
[Deutsche Schlüsselwörter]: Geschichte Spanische Influenza, Grippe-Pandemie, Kenia, Mortalität, Morbidität, Verwundbarkeit

Another paper on Spanish Influenza in Africa ("Etymology - What local names say about the perception of the pandemic") is introduced in a separate blog entry.

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