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    Lappalainen, Mirkka 2014. Death and Disease During the Great Finnish Famine 1695–1697. Scandinavian Journal of History, Vol. 39, Issue. 4, p. 425.

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    Speakman, John R 2006. Thrifty genes for obesity and the metabolic syndrome — time to call off the search?. Diabetes and Vascular Disease Research, Vol. 3, Issue. 1, p. 7.

    HIONIDOU, VIOLETTA 2002. Why do people die in famines? Evidence from three island populations.. Population Studies, Vol. 56, Issue. 1, p. 65.

    Dirks, Robert 1993. Starvation and Famine: Cross-Cultural Codes and Some Hypothesis Tests. Cross-Cultural Research, Vol. 27, Issue. 1-2, p. 28.

  • Print publication year: 1993
  • Online publication date: March 2008

III.5 - Famine and Disease

from Part III - Medical Specialties and Disease Prevention
Famine can be denned as a failure of food production or distribution resulting in dramatically increased mortality. This increase is attributable to three orders of disease: the disease of general starvation, behavioral disorders and social disruptions, and epidemic infection. Social responses to famine develop through three phases: the alarm phase, phase of resistance, and the exhaustion phase. Epidemic disease has the potential for ushering in general starvation, especially if infections debilitate or kill a large number of food producers. The several published lists of the world's major famines, all compiled before the 1970s, contain little mention of catastrophic food shortages among the peoples of sub-Saharan Africa, Oceania, and the New World. A rigorous historical detection of famine, should include evidence of a dramatic increase in mortality, and the evidence of a depression in live births.
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