CFC: Epidemics and War: The Impact of Disease on Major Conflicts in History

Charles V.  Reed's picture
Call for Papers
May 15, 2016
North Carolina, United States
Subject Fields: 
History of Science, Medicine, and Technology, Military History, World History / Studies, Environmental History / Studies

Call for contributions to forthcoming volume on disease and war:

Greetings to all! We are undertaking a new volume under the banner of ABC-CLIO with the Praeger Press.  Contributors are welcome to submit proposals to be part of this reference work on Epidemics and War.

The call for authors/contributors is under way for a single-volume reference work.  Scholars who specialize in the history of epidemics and/or military history are sought for this volume.  Each chapter will target a specific disease and will include the history of the disease, its occurrence and impact on wars over the ages, ranging from the fifth century BCE to the 21st century.  Disease symptoms will be revealed, including problems associated with diagnosing the disease in question (in certain cases).  As the volume focuses on the impact of the disease during times of war, contributors will consider methods of diffusion during the designated conflicts.

The volume will examine thirteen diseases caused by viral, fungal and/or bacterial infections.  An additional parasitical infection is examined, along with three diseases of unknown origin.  In each case, the contribution will connect each disease to a series of historical outbreaks, but each chapter will focus on a particular war, the outcome of which was influenced by the occurrence and spread of the disease.  Prospective authors will be asked to examine the relationship between diseases and military outcomes.

Interested individuals should select a preferred disease and conflict from the list provided.  They must contact the editor, Rebecca Seaman, providing a brief vita that supports their proposed disease/conflict selection.  Please respond with proposals and vitas by May 15, 2016.  All selected contributors will be contacted by the end of May and provided with more detailed expectations, deadlines and guidelines to ensure a consistent flow for all chapters in the combined volume.

Prospective chapters for selection:

Plague of Athens  430-424 BCE – Peloponnesian War

Antonine Plague 165-189 CE – Roman Civil War

English Sweating Sickness  1485 CE and the Battle of Bosworth

Cholera – 1854-55 – Crimean War

Diphtheria – 1943 – WWII Europe

Dysentery – 1861-1865 – American Civil War

Influenza – WWI

Malaria – Vietnam War

Measles – WWI recruitment camps and transport ships

Mumps – lasting impact of Bosnian War

Plague: Siege of Caffa – 1340s

Pneumonia – American Civil War

Small Pox – viral infection, ensuring destruction of armies in Spanish Conquest of Tenochtitlan and Inca civilizations

Small Pox – ensuring the survival of an Army – American Revolution

Typhus – Napoleonic Wars – invasion of Russia

Yellow Fever – Haitian Revolt, 1802-3

Contact Info: 


Rebecca Seaman, Ph.D.

Editor, Epidemics and War: The Impact of Disease on Major Conflicts in History




Contact Email: