Welcome back to Book Beginnings on Fridays, where participants share the opening sentence (or so) of the book they are reading this week. You can also share from a book you want to highlight just because it caught your fancy.
MY BOOK BEGINNING
One January morning in 1825, a white, seventeen-year-old boy from Newton, New Jersey, woke up with a case of “Mississippi Fever” – an insatiable urge to head west and south.-- from Necropolis: Disease, Power, and Capitalism in the Cotton Kingdom by Kathryn Olivarius.
YOUR BOOK BEGINNINGS
Please add the link to your Book Beginning post in the box below. If you share on social media, please use the hashtag #bookbeginnings. Thanks!
Freda at Freda's Voice hosts another teaser event on Fridays. Participants share a two-sentence teaser from page 56 of the book they are reading -- or from 56% of the way through the audiobook or ebook. Please visit Freda's Voice for details and to leave a link to your post.
MY FRIDAY 56
FROM THE PUBLISHER’S DESCRIPTION
Antebellum New Orleans sat at the heart of America's slave and cotton kingdoms. It was also where yellow fever epidemics killed as many as 150,000 people during the nineteenth century. With little understanding of mosquito-borne viruses--and meager public health infrastructure--a person's only protection against the scourge was to "get acclimated" by surviving the disease. About half of those who contracted yellow fever died.
. . . .
The question of good health--who has it, who doesn't, and why--is always in part political. Necropolis shows how powerful nineteenth-century white Orleanians--all allegedly immune--pushed this politics to the extreme. They constructed a society that capitalized mortal risk and equated perceived immunity with creditworthiness and reliability. Instead of trying to curb yellow fever through sanitation or quarantines, immune white Orleanians took advantage of the chaos disease caused. Immunological discrimination therefore became one more form of bias in a society premised on inequality, one more channel by which capital disciplined and divided the population.