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Organizers: Ian Read, Associate Professor, Latin American History, Director, International Studies & Michael Weiner, Associate Dean of Faculty, Professor, East Asian History and International Studies

This conference brings together scholars in the social sciences, the sciences and the humanities from across the United States to explore three interrelated assumptions.  The first is that we cannot control disease without defining it.  Disease can be elusive and politically contentious or it can be painfully obvious and leave no room for debate.  Disease can be intimately private, hidden behind the curtain and under the bed-sheets, or it may billow like a hurricane, sweeping across continents with devastating consequences.  Diseases will physically degenerate, deform and activate the senses, such as the scarlet buboes of plague, the stench of cholera, the deformity of leprosy, or it may be a senseless disorder of crowds and infectious behaviors.  In fact, disease is often defined by its control, the second assumption this conference explores. This may require the quick and private puncture of a needle or the needing of a massage, or it may be the call to marshal an army against a national threat.  The cure may be to administer a people, to survey their bodies, and transform the careful observation of their movements and biological responses into charts and data.  Cure may be a doctor’s heroic intervention to maintain the heartbeat of a newborn, or the attempted extermination of an entire population.  Finally, we explore the assumption that disease and its control are best understood in their “eras,” as products of history that cannot be confined to the local or the global.

All events will take place at the Athenaeum and there will be no admission fee. 

Since seating is limited, please RSVP. The Registration Link will go live on Sept. 9, 2017 and members of the SUA community, including alumni, will receive priority for 48 hours.  REGISTRATION IS NOW CLOSED.