Programme for the Future of Cities Seminar Series – ‘A Plague of Rats: The Material and Visual Emergence of Interspecies Urban Epidemic Control’

Date: 08/02/2017 - 16.30

The Future of Cities programme presents the first seminar in its Oxford University Spring Term seminar series, ‘Urban Life’.

This seminar is titled ‘A Plague of Rats: The Material and Visual Emergence of Interspecies Urban Epidemic Control’ and will be presented by Christos Lynteris (Visual Plague project, CRASSH, University of Cambridge).

The seminar will be held at 16:30-18:00, at the Wellcome Unit for the History of Medicine, 47 Banbury Road, OX26PE

All are welcome to attend. The full seminar series flyer can be found below.

Presentation abstract:
The global pandemic of bubonic plague at the turn of the nineteenth century known as the third plague pandemic struck at major harbours and cities across the globe, leaving behind it 12 million dead. It was in the course of this pandemic that the rat came to be understood for the first time as a vector of the particular disease, thus leading to mass-scale programmes of vector control in cities across the globe. These came to include three types of intervention: rat eradication, rat-proofing and urban demolition. This seminar will explore the unfolding and interrelation of these measures of epidemic control, focusing on the role of visual media in their execution, propagation and entanglement. It will thus explore the lasting legacy of these visual and material regimes of interspecies epidemic control in the urban terrain.

FoC Spring 17