Attributes of The Ghost Map By Steven Johnson PDF
A National Bestseller, a New York Times Notable Book, and an Entertainment Weekly Best Book of the Year The Ghost Map By Steven Johnson PDF
It’s the summer of 1854, and London is just emerging as one of the first modern cities in the world. But lacking the infrastructure-garbage removal, clean water, sewers-necessary to support its rapidly expanding population, the city has become the perfect breeding ground for a terrifying disease no one knows how to cure. As the cholera outbreak takes hold, a physician and a local curate are spurred to action-and ultimately solve the most pressing medical riddle of their time.
In a triumph of multidisciplinary thinking, Johnson illuminates the intertwined histories of the spread of disease, the rise of cities, and the nature of scientific inquiry, offering both a riveting history and a powerful explanation of how it has shaped the world we live in.
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Illustrations of The Ghost Map By Steven Johnson PDF
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Proportions of The Ghost Map By Steven Johnson PDF
- Publisher : Riverhead Books; Illustrated edition (October 2, 2007)
- Language : English
- Paperback : 336 pages
- International Standard Book Number-10 : 1594482691
- International Standard Book Number-13 : 978-1594482694
- Item Weight : 10.4 ounces
- Dimensions : 5.5 x 0.8 x 8.2 inches
Reviews From Customers
In need of a good editor
March 12, 2019
I really enjoy non-fiction books about epidemics and history. I enjoyed parts of this book for that reason. What I didn’t like was reading the same thing over and over – it became quite annoying. This author seems so impressed with his own ideas and prose that he cannot help pounding the reader over the head with the same content multiple times. He reuses certain phrases so frequently, I found myself gritting my teeth when I ran into yet another instance. A good editor would have stripped the redundancy from the text and left the book about half as long.
I also didn’t much care for the flight of fancy at the end. It was a completely off-topic, unsupported ramble that one might encounter at a cocktail party when everyone’s had a few – I did not expect or want to find it in a book that’s supposed to be about a cholera epidemic.
If this book was edited, the author should consider employing a different editor who will be honest with him about his repetitive and gushy writing style. Finishing this text was a slog.
A triumph of the scientific method
February 14, 2018
A very good and interesting introduction to English life of the ordinary people. The aristocrat’s life of ease rested on the shoulders of these people who struggled just to live. The primary reason that country people began to move to the cities was because many estates were converted to sheep farming. See the history of the so-called ‘Highland clearances’.
The description of the disposal of human bodies and graveyards in general makes one wonder why cremation was not widespread.
Concerning Johnson’s discussion of the scavengers in third world countries, in America, in the 21st Century we still have people who make their living scavenging the streets, highways and dumpsters for metal, such as aluminum cans.
It’s interesting that Dr. Snow and the Rev. Whitehead actually interviewed people in the cholera infected areas. The aristocracy generally had no interest in the underclasses.
All in all, The Ghost Map is a document celebrating the triumph of the scientific method versus “everybody knows”.
Read it. You may learn something.
Since this book was published in 2006, some sections are now dated.
Nancy S. Cunningham
Repetitious, too long, boring take on an interesting subject
January 11, 2019
This book was hard to read, but it was selected by my Book Club (no idea why) so I slogged through to the end and found that what was essential and compelling could have been written 100 pages or less. The last two chapters are better than the preceding chapters. I like science, and enjoyed The Great Influenza, by John M. Barry, which is 200 pages longer than Ghost Map but I couldn’t put it down.
April 7, 2017
Through the London epidemic of Cholera in 1854, the author presents the Victorian era science, public opinions and participating individuals in the pursuit of stopping the epidemic. The book is about the urbanization of society and subsequent public health challenges, and how the experience shaped the management of urban governing through science, sociology and engineering and the future ramifications of urban issues in the time of global dangers. It is one of those exemplary non fiction, history/science/technology books that are entertaining with interesting participants, and their opponents–personal, political and environmental–, but in the end the triumph against all odds, thanks to some luck, but a whole lot of tenacity and scientific and personal integrity and faith. There are many lessons, one of which is what Susan Sontag wrote about as well, the malice of attaching morality to disease–here, for example phrenology, or internal constitution as a factor, classism, or the treatment of people with AIDS during the Reagan administration in our time. I found the only problem with this book is that his Epilogue is way too long than necessary, and he repeats same issues that have been discussed already.
Excited to read it eventually
May 15, 2019
Haven’t gotten the opportunity to read this yet but I am looking forward to it.
Great book, teaches you a little bit about everything
January 25, 2019
I love historical stories that manage to find themselves in a network of tangents that always interconnect to each other, and this book is the best one I have found for that. I originally bought the book because I am a map maker and wanted to know more about the famous Cholera Map that is also considered the first use of GIS analysis. I instead got a ridiculously wonderful ride learning about so many topics that by the time I was finished, I felt like I had learned so much more than just about the map that was created. The author is witty and has a lot of passion for what he is talking about and it shows in his book. It was easy to read (unless you are queasy around death… then it may not be super easy to read, a lot of people die) and I enjoyed every chapter to the degree that I had to fill everyone in around me with what was going on in the book as I was going along. This is probably one of the top recommended books I ever have for people who are curious about just learning anything and everything about how the world works and is connected in the strangest ways.
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