Manfred Vasold: Die Spanische Grippe : Die Seuche und der Erste Weltkrieg. Primus, Darmstadt, 2009, 142 páginas.


His final conclusion is that the flu may have speeded up the end of the war. The war may have speeded up the flu's transmission around the world, or possibly slowed it down. The US had a higher rate of deaths than Europe: it started there and the US had the Native Americans, who like other similar groups around the world had more deaths. Indeed in some groups over 20% of the population died. The high numbers of young people who died certainly made a difference in Europe between the wars. And it's high time more research was done on all of this in German-speaking Academia.

I am just overwhelmed by the figures from around the world. I don't know how you even begin to imagine,'The steamer came to Samoa. The flu took off and it is estimated that 90% of the natives fell sick.' 'In Nome 176 of 300 Inuit died.' 'In Aukland, New Zealand, hospital a special ward was set up for flu patients. It was soon full with nurses as of the 180 nurses in the hospital, 140 fell sick with the flu.' ...

Again and again he discusses the lack of doctors, but as he also mentions the highly questionable treatments, the lack of doctors may not have been such a bad thing in this case.

The book is well written, I'm just overwhelmed, though at how much misery and disaster can be fit into a book of only 140 pages.