Medicine And Politics In Colonial Peru: Population Growth And The Bourbon Reforms (Pitt Latin American Series)

Medicine And Politics In Colonial Peru: Population Growth And The Bourbon Reforms (Pitt Latin American Series)

Medicine and Politics in Colonial Peru: Population Growth and the Bourbon Reforms (Pitt Latin American Series)

By the end of the eighteenth century, Peru had witnessed the decline of its once-thriving silver industry, and it had barely begun to recover from massive population losses due to smallpox and other diseases. At the time, it was widely believed that economic salvation was contingent upon increasing the labor force and maintaining as many healthy workers as possible. In Medicine and Politics in Colonial Peru,Adam Warrenpresents a groundbreaking study of the primacy placed on medical care to generate population growth during this era.

The Bourbon reforms of the eighteenth century shaped many of the political, economic, and social interests of Spain and its colonies. In Peru, local elites saw the reforms as an opportunity to positively transform society and its conceptions of medicine and medical institutions in the name of the Crown. Creole physicians in particular, took advantage of Bourbon reforms to wrest control of medical treatment away from the Catholic Church, establish their own medical expertise, and create a new, secular medical culture. They asserted their new influence by treating smallpox and leprosy, by reforming medical education, and by introducing hygienic routines into...

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