The Ghost Map: The Story of London's Most Terrifying Epidemic - and Wow it Changed Science, Cities, and the Modern World

The Ghost Map: The Story of London's Most Terrifying Epidemic - and Wow it Changed Science, Cities, and the Modern World


By (author) Steven Johnson

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  • Publisher: Riverhead Books,U.S.
  • Format: Paperback | 299 pages
  • Dimensions: 137mm x 206mm x 20mm | 249g
  • Publication date: 28 November 2007
  • Publication City/Country: New York
  • ISBN 10: 1594482691
  • ISBN 13: 9781594482694
  • Edition: 1
  • Edition statement: Reprint
  • Sales rank: 65,891

Product description

A National Bestseller, a "New York Times" Notable Book, and an "Entertainment Weekly" Best Book of the Year From Steven Johnson, the dynamic thinker routinely compared to James Gleick, Dava Sobel, and Malcolm Gladwell, "The Ghost Map" is a riveting page-turner about a real-life historical hero, Dr. John Snow. It's the summer of 1854, and London is just emerging as one of the first modern cities in the world. But lacking the infrastructure -- garbage removal, clean water, sewers -- necessary to support its rapidly expanding population, the city has become the perfect breeding ground for a terrifying disease no one knows how to cure. As the cholera outbreak takes hold, a physician and a local curate are spurred to action-and ultimately solve the most pressing medical riddle of their time. In a triumph of multidisciplinary thinking, Johnson illuminates the intertwined histories and interconnectedness of the spread of disease, contagion theory, the rise of cities, and the nature of scientific inquiry, offering both a riveting history and a powerful explanation of how it has shaped the world we live in.

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Author information

Steven Johnson is the author of seven bestsellers, including "Future Perfect," "Where Good Ideas Come From," "The Invention of Air," "The Ghost Map," and "Everything Bad Is Good for You," and is the editor of the anthology "The Innovator s Cookbook." He is the founder of a variety of influential websites most recently, and writes for "Time," "Wired," "The New York Times," and "The Wall Street Journal." He lives in Marin County, California, with his wife and three sons."

Review quote

"The simultaneously macro and micro examination of a hugely pivotal moment, both in the understanding of disease and the growth of cities. Highly informative, deeply entertaining, meticulously assembled. Splendid." -- William Gibson

Table of contents

The Ghost MapPreface Monday, August 28 The Night-Soil Men Saturday, September 2 Eyes Sunk, Lips Dark Blue Sunday, September 3 The Investigator Monday, September 4 That Is To Say, Jo Has Not Yet Died Tuesday. September 5 All Smell Is Disease Wednesday, September 6 Building The Case Friday, September 8 The Pump Handle Conclusion The Ghost Map Epilogue Broad Street Revisited Author's Note Acknowledgments Appendix: Notes on Further Reading Notes Bibliography Index