Medieval Public Health with Guy Geltner and Janna Coomans

Episode 13 - June 6, 2020

Guy Geltner and Janna Coomans from the University of Amsterdam and members of the project, Premodern Healthcaping, discuss their work that offers new insights into what public health was like in medieval urban settings. They reveal a far more complex picture of how local cities practiced various types of public health. Geltner and Coomans talk about examples from Italy, the Islamicate world, and the Low Countries of how produce markets and local communities, among many others, organized and maintained sanitary standards, even before the Black Death struck Eurasia. At the end, they reflect on why studying medieval urban public health can change how we think about modern public health around the globe today.

Our Guests

Guy Geltner

Professor of History, University of Amsterdam and Monash University

Janna Coomans

Postdoctoral researcher, Department of Medieval History, Amsterdam University

Janna Coomans