Books on Plagues and People

History 101 – Fall 2020  Response Paper #1 Based on a reading of William McNeill’s Plagues and Peoples Respond to the following in essay form. Responses should total not less than 1250 words. A footnote has been included as a guide. Failure to follow a standardized citation form is slothful, especially given word-processing assistance. 1. What are “macroparasites?” What are “microparasites?” How does “modulated macroparasitism” operate? In what environments are microparasites most significant? What are some of the ways that these two types of parasites interact? 2. What does McNeill mean in the following quote: Looked at from the point of view of other organisms, humankind therefore resembles an acute epidemic disease, whose occasional lapses into less virulent forms of behavior have never yet sufficed to permit any really stable, chronic relationship to establish itself. 3. Does McNeill believe that the advances of modern medicine have banished microparasitism from the human condition? 4. Respond to one of the following: -How did the expansion of the Mongol Empire in the thirteenth century alter the disease environment of Eurasia? -How does McNeill’s narrative encourage us to reinterpret the “Fall of the Roman Empire” in the fifth century and Justinian’s effort to reconstitute it in the sixth century?

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