The History of Famine and Epidemics in Ethiopia

Richard Pankhurst made significant contributions to the study of history in Ethiopia (see a listing of some of his works here). In this book, "The History of Famine and Epidemics in Ethiopia Prior to the Twentieth Century" (1985), published by the Relief and Rehabilitation Commission, Richard Pankhurst brings together a series of others works:

  1. The Great Ethiopian Famine of 1889-92 (1961) University College Review
  2. The Great Ethiopian Famine of 1888-92: A New Assessment (1966) Journal of the History of Medicine and Allied Sciences
  3. The History of Famine and Pestilence in Ethiopia Prior to the Founding of Gondar (1972) Ethiopian Medical Journal
  4. The Earliest History of Famine and Pestilence in Ethiopia (1973) Ethiopian Medical Journal
  5. Introduction to the Economic History of Ethiopia (1961)
  6. Economic History of Ethiopia 1800-1935 (1968)

What I liked from the book is the clear outline of the complex interaction of factors that result in famine and epidemic. Rarely is it ever a single factor. This approach may have been more common in historical works than in development studies in decades past. Pankhurst outlines how in the 1888-92 famine, the first factor was animal disease, which contributed to agricultural failure as fields could not be plowed. The failure of rains also contributed to poor agricultural yields and a hot and dry season resulted in more locust, which compounded the losses. As famine struck, prices for all food commodities rose, deepening the food insecurity situation. As people began to die, poor sanitation resulted in the spread of human disease, and further loss of human life.

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Funded PhD: Social History of the Ebola Epidemics: Ethnography of a Neighbourhood

As partners of a European research project aiming at studying the conditions of a more efficient response to the epidemic risk of Ebola hemorrhagic fever in Guinea-Conakry, funded by Horizon 2020, we offer a three-year PhD contract at the prestigious Ecole normale supérieure de Lyon (ENS de Lyon).

The PhD student will join a team of anthropologists to work on a socio-history of the Ebola epidemics, aiming at reporting on the political and social questions raised by the sanitary intervention against Ebola in Guinea-Conakry, based on an ethnography of a neighbourhood and/or a village.

Your application must include :

- Your CV
- A cover letter telling us why you want to do a PhD, and why this one
- An outline of your proposed research (500 words plus bibliography).

Should you have any question please feel free to contact Hélène Colineau at ENS de Lyon This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Your application must be sent to Hélène Colineau, Deadline October 1st, 2016 (included).

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