UCSB Latin American and Iberian Studies Program

Watch: Coronavirus and Historical Patterns of Epidemics in Latin America

A Zoom Talk by Dr. Marcos Cueto

Watch the Facebook Live video here: https://www.facebook.com/watch/live/?v=2919408944833366

Friday May 22nd, at 12 pm – 1:30 pm (PST), via Zoom

Abstract. Historical studies on epidemics in Latin America have magnified fragilities in public health structures, revealed the vulnerability of the poor and discovered cases of heroism under adversity. They have also identified an historical trend –revived in the contemporary crisis caused by Covid-19– characterized by a reductionism in the explanation of the social factors that sustain epidemics, insufficient and contradictory official responses and stigma against marginal groups. This presentation will discuss the main historical patterns of response to epidemics in Latin America, especially in Brazil, during the late 20th and early 21st centuries and relate them to the coronavirus pandemic.

Marcos Cueto is Professor of History of Health at the Casa Oswaldo Cruz, FIOCRUZ, in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, and a Researcher in the Instituto de Estudios Peruanos in Lima. He holds a PhD from Columbia University and was a postdoctoral fellow at the Science, Technology and Society Program at the MIT. His major books include A History of the World Health Organization (2019); Medicine and Public Health in Latin America (2016) (co-authored with S. Palmer), which won the 2017 George Rosen Award of the American Association for the History of Medicine; Cold War and Deadly Fevers: Malaria Eradication in Mexico, 1955-1970 (2007), among many others. He has been a visiting professor at Harvard, the University of Shanghai, the University College London, L’Institut de hautes études internationales et du développement in Geneva, Stanford, Princeton, Columbia, and New York University and was fellow of the Guggenheim, Mellon, Tinker, Ford, and Rockefeller foundations.  He publishes regularly in English, Spanish and Portuguese. 

* Professor Cueto will be joining us from Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. This event is organized by the Program in Latin American and Iberian Studies with generous co sponsorship from the Department of History.