Pandemics, Publics, and Narrative

  • ISBN 9780190683764
Research suggests that future influenza pandemics are inevitable as strains of the virus mutate in new ways. With this uncomfortable reality in mind, this book examines how the general public experienced the 2009 H1N1 influenza virus outbreak by bringing together stories about individuals' perception of their illness, as well as reflections on news, vaccination, social isolation, and other infection control measures. The book also charts the story-telling of public
life, including the 'be alert, not alarmed' messages from the beginning of the outbreak through to the narratives that emerged later when the virus turned out to be less serious than initially thought.

Providing unprecedented insight into the lives of ordinary people faced with the specter of a potentially lethal virus and drawing on currents in sociocultural scholarship of narrative, illness narrative, and narrative medicine, Pandemics, Publics, and Narrative develops a novel 'public health narrative' approach of interest to health communicators and researchers across the social and health sciences.
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