From Plagues and Flus to Covid-19; an Expose on Human Response to the Spread of Disease

Melanie Johnson, Thomas Steiger, Center for Student Research and Creativity, Indiana State University Holmstedt Hall room 256, 620 Chestnut St, Terre Haute, IN 47809

Mankind is no stranger to sickness and disease. Since the very beginnings of recorded history societies have been plagued by, and therefore had to overcome, the outbreak of many epidemics/pandemics. From first recognizing an initial outbreak to attempting to prevent further spread, societal response has shown to have great impact on the duration and extremity of such occurrences.  Starting with a brief introduction to the history/origin of disease this expose then explores a few well known historical pandemics/epidemics, for example “The Black Death” and “The Spanish Flu”, and the strategies which the affected societies took to prevent their spread. Analysis will be made on how stringently these strategies were followed by their contemporaries and the impact this had on the spread of the disease. After examining the development of change, if any, in human response to the outbreak of disease over time, we will review the responses of a few modern societies to the outbreak of the Covid-19 pandemic. First identified in December of 2019, Covid-19 is a coronavirus which was officially classified as a pandemic by the World Health Organization on March 11, 2020. We will analyze a few of the routes various countries have taken in an effort to prevent the spread of the disease. What were the restrictions imposed? (If any) Were they largely followed? How has this impacted their reported cases of the disease?  It is often said that history is doomed to repeat itself. This expose will scrutinize human nature and mankind’s ability to adapt for the “greater good” through the lens of transmittable disease. 

Additional Abstract Information

Presenter: Melanie Johnson

Institution: Indiana State University

Type: Poster

Subject: Interdisciplinary Studies

Status: Approved

Time and Location

Session: Poster 8
Date/Time: Tue 5:00pm-6:00pm
Session Number: 5520