Henry David Thoreau and Walden Pond: Purpose in Isolation

‘Walden,’ published in 1854, is a manual for solitude with a purpose. Introduction Seeking to bend the coronavirus curve, governors and mayors have told millions of Americans to stay home. If you’re pondering what to read, it’s easy to find lists featuring books about disease outbreaks, solitude and living a simpler life. But it’s much[…]

The Fashionable History of Social Distancing

In the past, maintaining physical distance was an important aspect of public life – and clothes played a big role. As the world grapples with the coronavirus outbreak, “social distancing” has become a buzzword of these strange times. Instead of stockpiling food or rushing to the hospital, authorities are saying social distancing – deliberately increasing[…]

Inoculation in the 18th Century

Vaccination led ultimately to the eradication of smallpox, one of the great achievements of medicine. By Arthur Boylston Introduction Early in the 18th century, variolation (referred to then as ‘inoculation’) was introduced to Britain and New England to protect people likely to be at risk of infection with smallpox. This triggered a number of important[…]

The Journey of Vaccines, Past and Present

Inoculation spread all over the world and revolutionized the field of vaccination against several other infectious diseases. Introduction The history of the process of vaccination and the concept to vaccinate is 1000 of year old (>3000 years) that originated in the ancient Indian peninsula (Northern and Eastern India) as a practice of variolation/inoculation (the immunization of[…]

The Means of Ancient Communication

Since the art of writing was discovered, nearly every form of writing material has been used. By Grahame Johnstone Introduction The invention of writing and in particular of alphabetic writing marked a milestone in cultural development. It provided humanity with a new means of communication that literally inscribed in stone the spoken word. Communication could[…]

An Historical Overview of Communication since the Prehistoric World

Human communication was revolutionized with the origin of speech approximately 500,000 BCE. Introduction The history of communication technologies (media and appropriate inscription tools) have evolved in tandem with shifts in political and economic systems, and by extension, systems of power. Communication can range from very subtle processes of exchange, to full conversations and mass communication.[…]