HIST2624: Topics in the History of Data in Social Context

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  • Reporting, Recording, and Remembering the 1918 Influenza Epidemic
    Reznick, Jeffrey S.; Ewing, E. Thomas; Bristow, Nancy; Morens, David M. (National Library of Medicine, 2020-04-29)
    A public research symposium involving Virginia Tech students studying the history of data in social context through individual and collaborative primary-source research at the National Library of Medicine and elsewhere, and as part of their course Topics in the History of Data in Social Context, being taught by Dr. E. Thomas Ewing, Virginia Tech Associate Dean of Graduate Studies and Research Professor. During the symposium, the students will present their research on various aspects of the 1918 pandemic, including newspaper reporting at the peak of the epidemic (late September to early November 1918), contemporary social distancing policies and procedures, and how contemporaries determined that the epidemic was ending, and how they remembered the remarkable experience of this intense, but brief, crisis in community health. Discussants will include Dr. Nancy Bristow of the University of Puget Sound and author of American Pandemic: The Lost Worlds of the 1918 Influenza Epidemic (Oxford University Press, 2012), among others to be announced. Reporting, Recording, and Remembering the 1918 Influenza Epidemic is sponsored by the NLM History of Medicine Division in cooperation with the National Endowment for the Humanities Office of Digital Humanities—as part of the ongoing NLM/NEH partnership to collaborate on research, education, and career initiatives. This program also advances the NLM 2017-2027 strategic plan emphasizing data-driven discovery, enhanced stakeholder engagement, and the role of libraries and archives in providing trusted information.