Mapping a zoonotic disease: Anglo-American efforts to control bovine tuberculosis before World War I.

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Abstract

Before World War I, British and American public health officials correlated tuberculosis in dairy cattle with severe infections in milk-drinking children. They traced bacteria in municipal milk supplies, mapped the locations of infected animals, and sought regulatory power to destroy them. Consumers, milk producers, municipal officials, veterinarians, and physicians all influenced the shape of antituberculosis regulations. Many condemned pasteurization as too costly and as masking tubercular contamination and poor sanitation. They saw milk-borne tuberculosis as an environmental as well as a bacteriological problem. Similar to other zoonotic diseases such as BSE, bovine tuberculosis blurred the boundaries between urban and rural, production and consumption, and human and animal bodies.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)133-148
Number of pages16
JournalOsiris
Volume19
DOIs
StatePublished - 2004

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