Spatial ecologist Marius Gilbert reviews Big Farms Make Big Flu for Lancet Infectious Diseases:
“The popular narrative of deadly viruses emerging from wild animal reservoirs clearly appeals to humankind’s deeply rooted fascination with wildlife and its dangers. But isn’t such a focus on the zoonotic origin of emerging infectious diseases distracting attention from the more important social, economic, and cultural forces operating at diﬀerent spatial and temporal scales and contributing to the chain of causality leading to epidemics?
“In his book, Big farms make big ﬂu: dispatches on inﬂuenza, agribusiness, and the nature of science, evolutionary ecologist Rob Wallace calls on virology, phylogeography, political ecology, mathematical modelling, and economics to tackle those questions by taking us on a rich and fascinating journey through the multiple layers of causality in the emergence of disease. In parallel to multiple dispatches on inﬂuenza and other emerging infectious diseases, Wallace addresses a number of biocultural issues linked to the globalisation of food and ﬁbre markets…
“What makes Wallace’s book a must-read for those concerned with emerging infectious diseases, and many other issues emerging from modern food systems, is the breadth of interrelated themes and the richness and thought-provoking nature of the assemblage. Readers will put down this book thinking of emerging infectious diseases in a diﬀerent light; cognisant of their multiple and intertwined root causes in the context of our rapidly changing agro-ecological environment.”
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