Medicalising borders

Selection, containment and quarantine since 1800

Edited by Sevasti Trubeta, Christian Promitzer and Paul Weindling

Medicalising borders


  • eBook

Book Information

  • Format: Hardcover
  • ISBN: 978-1-5261-5466-8
  • Pages: 336
  • Publisher: Manchester University Press
  • Price: £80.00
  • Published Date: April 2021
  • BIC Category: History of Medicine, SOCIAL SCIENCE / Emigration & Immigration, HISTORY / Modern / General, SOCIAL SCIENCE / Anthropology / Cultural, Society & social sciences / Migration, immigration & emigration, Society & social sciences / Social & cultural anthropology, ethnography, Medicine / History of medicine, Medical Anthropology
  • Series: Rethinking Borders


The research of pandemics, epidemics, and pathogens like SARS-CoV-2, reaches beyond biomedicine and touches the core of modern statehood, since foci and vectors of communicable diseases are testing the efficacy of medical control at state borders.

By illuminating these issues from a multidisciplinary perspective, this volume starts with historical models of quarantine. It deals with fears of contamination and the corresponding stereotypes border crossers and migrants are confronted with. At state borders the latter have been subject to the implementation of medical, genetic and biometric screening techniques.

The book wants to show that the contemporary border security regimes of Western states exhibit a high share of medicalised techniques of power that originate in European modernity; it draws on the expertise of a network of researchers who deal with these issues from the early eighteenth century up to recent developments.


Introduction: Medicalising borders - Sevasti Trubeta, Christian Promitzer, Paul Weindling

1 Habsburg border quarantines until 1837: an epidemiological 'iron curtain'? - Sabine Jesner
2 Cholera at the junction of maritime and land routes in 19th-century Trieste - Urska Bratoz
3 Uses of quarantine in the 19th century until the Crimean War - examples from Southeast Europe - Christian Promitzer
4 Weak State-controlled disease prevention in peripheral border regions: Austrian Bukovina and Dalmatia in late 19th century - Carlos Watzka

(Dis-)connections - containment
5 Lazarettos as border filters: expurgating bodies, commodities and ideas, 1800-1870s - John Chircop
6 Sealing borders and containing prisoners: from free movement of migrants to containment in concentration camps - Paul Weindling
7 Locating disease: on the co-existence of diverse concepts of territory and the spread of disease - Sarah Green
8 Fear and panic at the borders: outbreak anxieties in the United States from the colonies to COVID-19 - Amy Lauren Fairchild, Constance A. Nathanson, and Cullen Conway

9 'Suspect' screening: the limits of Britain's medicalised borders, 1962-1981 - Roberta Bivins
10 A question of hygiene or nationality? Exclusion and non-Jewish labour migrants, refugees and asylum-seekers in Israel, 2006-2017 - Robin A. Harper and Hani Zubida
11 Medicalised borders and racism in the era of humanitarianism - Sevasti Trubeta


Sevasti Trubeta is researcher from the University of Applied Sciences Magdeburg-Stendal, Institute of Childhood Studies; Christian Promitzer is a historian with focus on Central Europe and the Balkans as well as on medical history for the University of Graz, Institut für Geschichte; Paul Weindling is Wellcome Trust Research Professor in the History of Medicine for the School of History, Philosophy and Culture at Oxford Brookes University

Medicalising borders

Edited by Sevasti Trubeta, Christian Promitzer, Paul Weindling

Hardcover £80.00 / $120.00

Or buy from your preferred bookseller:

Amazon Waterstones Blackwells

Click here for North and South America

Sign up to our newsletter
and receive 30% off all future book orders

Do NOT follow this link or you will be banned from the site!

Your cart is empty.

Select your shipping destination to estimate postage costs

(Based on standard shipping costs)

Final cost calculated on checkout
Promotional codes can be added on Checkout