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IMC 2023: Sessions

Session 542: Disease in the Medieval Islamicate World, I: Origins and Impacts

Tuesday 4 July 2023, 09.00-10.30

Organisers:Nahyan Fancy, Department of History, DePauw University, Indiana
Monica Green, Department of History, Arizona State University
Moderator/Chair:Sean W. Anthony, Department of Near Eastern Languages & Cultures, Ohio State University
Paper 542-aThe Impact of the Justinianic Plague on Long Run Economic Development in The Middle East: Post-Plague Fertility and Human Capital
(Language: English)
Maya Shatzmiller, Department of History, University of Western Ontario
Index terms: Demography, Economics - General, Medicine, Women's Studies
Paper 542-bA Metaphor for Contagion in Qusṭā ibn Lūqā's Book of Contagion (Al-Kitāb fi-l-I'dā')
(Language: English)
Shahrzad Irannejad, Graduiertenkolleg 1876 'Frühe Konzepte von Mensch und Natur', Johannes Gutenberg-Universität Mainz
Index terms: Islamic and Arabic Studies, Medicine, Science
Paper 542-cRecords of Plague in 13th-Century Syriac Sources from the Mongol Period
(Language: English)
Salam Rassi, School of Divinity, University of Edinburgh
Index terms: Historiography - Medieval, Language and Literature - Semitic, Medicine

When the armies of Islam expanded out of Arabia in the 7th century, plague was already circulating in the Roman and Persian empires. Plague was, in other words, present at the birth of the Islamicate world. Shatziller (a) looks at the demographic impact, arguing that fertility control kept population levels low, allowing women's labor to lift general prosperity. The presence of plague in the late antique world also sparked continuing discussion of contagion, the topic addressed in Irannejad's paper (b). Salam (c) looks at evidence from Syriac sources that suggest how plague's reintroduction into western Asia in the 13th century may have been perceived.