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Geographical structures and the cholera epidemic in modern Japan: Fukushima prefecture in 1882 and 1895.

Kuo CL, Fukui H - Int J Health Geogr (2007)

Bottom Line: The data reveal different diffusion systems in separate regions in which residents of Fukushima and neighboring prefectures interacted.Our model also shows that an area in the prefecture's northern interior was dominated by a mix of diffusion processes (contagious and hierarchical), that the southern coastal region was affected by a contagious process, and that other infected areas experienced relocation diffusion.By highlighting the dynamics of regional reorganization, our findings can be used to better understand the formation of an urban hierarchy in late nineteenth century Japan.

View Article: PubMed Central - HTML - PubMed

Affiliation: Center for Geographic Information Science, Research Center for Humanities and Social Sciences, Academia Sinica, Taipei, Taiwan. jinlin@ntu.edu.tw

ABSTRACT

Background: Disease diffusion patterns can provide clues for understanding geographical change. Fukushima, a rural prefecture in northeast Japan, was chosen for a case study of the late nineteenth century cholera epidemic that occurred in that country. Two volumes of Cholera Ryu-ko Kiji (Cholera Epidemic Report), published by the prefectural government in 1882 and 1895, provide valuable records for analyzing and modelling diffusion. Text descriptions and numerical evidence culled from the reports were incorporated into a temporal-spatial study framework using geographic information system (GIS) and geo-statistical techniques.

Results: Changes in diffusion patterns between 1882 and 1895 reflect improvements in the Fukushima transportation system and growth in social-economic networks. The data reveal different diffusion systems in separate regions in which residents of Fukushima and neighboring prefectures interacted. Our model also shows that an area in the prefecture's northern interior was dominated by a mix of diffusion processes (contagious and hierarchical), that the southern coastal region was affected by a contagious process, and that other infected areas experienced relocation diffusion.

Conclusion: In addition to enhancing our understanding of epidemics, the spatial-temporal patterns of cholera diffusion offer opportunities for studying regional change in modern Japan. By highlighting the dynamics of regional reorganization, our findings can be used to better understand the formation of an urban hierarchy in late nineteenth century Japan.

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Cholera diffusion patterns in 1882 and 1895 for geographic terrain and traffic network comparisons.
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Figure 3: Cholera diffusion patterns in 1882 and 1895 for geographic terrain and traffic network comparisons.

Mentions: An overlay map of cholera case locations and traffic networks is shown in Figure 3. Epidemic pattern changes between Fukushima villages between 1882 and 1895 are clearly evident in Figures 3a and 3b. The 1882 distribution was spatially located in the central-inland area, eastern coastline, and large valleys in the western region; the 1895 distribution heavily affected the central inland, coastal areas, and mountains in the eastern part of the prefecture. The 1895 distribution also shows concentric patterns in the north inland region and south coastal area. Figures 3c and 3d show the locations of infected villages in terms of Fukushima's main traffic networks. In 1882 the spread was limited to locations along those networks. In 1895 the number of infected villages increased, with many located more than 50 kilometres from previously identified hot spots. Features identified from figure comparisons include:


Geographical structures and the cholera epidemic in modern Japan: Fukushima prefecture in 1882 and 1895.

Kuo CL, Fukui H - Int J Health Geogr (2007)

Cholera diffusion patterns in 1882 and 1895 for geographic terrain and traffic network comparisons.
© Copyright Policy - open-access
Related In: Results  -  Collection

License
Show All Figures
getmorefigures.php?uid=PMC1941729&req=5

Figure 3: Cholera diffusion patterns in 1882 and 1895 for geographic terrain and traffic network comparisons.
Mentions: An overlay map of cholera case locations and traffic networks is shown in Figure 3. Epidemic pattern changes between Fukushima villages between 1882 and 1895 are clearly evident in Figures 3a and 3b. The 1882 distribution was spatially located in the central-inland area, eastern coastline, and large valleys in the western region; the 1895 distribution heavily affected the central inland, coastal areas, and mountains in the eastern part of the prefecture. The 1895 distribution also shows concentric patterns in the north inland region and south coastal area. Figures 3c and 3d show the locations of infected villages in terms of Fukushima's main traffic networks. In 1882 the spread was limited to locations along those networks. In 1895 the number of infected villages increased, with many located more than 50 kilometres from previously identified hot spots. Features identified from figure comparisons include:

Bottom Line: The data reveal different diffusion systems in separate regions in which residents of Fukushima and neighboring prefectures interacted.Our model also shows that an area in the prefecture's northern interior was dominated by a mix of diffusion processes (contagious and hierarchical), that the southern coastal region was affected by a contagious process, and that other infected areas experienced relocation diffusion.By highlighting the dynamics of regional reorganization, our findings can be used to better understand the formation of an urban hierarchy in late nineteenth century Japan.

View Article: PubMed Central - HTML - PubMed

Affiliation: Center for Geographic Information Science, Research Center for Humanities and Social Sciences, Academia Sinica, Taipei, Taiwan. jinlin@ntu.edu.tw

ABSTRACT

Background: Disease diffusion patterns can provide clues for understanding geographical change. Fukushima, a rural prefecture in northeast Japan, was chosen for a case study of the late nineteenth century cholera epidemic that occurred in that country. Two volumes of Cholera Ryu-ko Kiji (Cholera Epidemic Report), published by the prefectural government in 1882 and 1895, provide valuable records for analyzing and modelling diffusion. Text descriptions and numerical evidence culled from the reports were incorporated into a temporal-spatial study framework using geographic information system (GIS) and geo-statistical techniques.

Results: Changes in diffusion patterns between 1882 and 1895 reflect improvements in the Fukushima transportation system and growth in social-economic networks. The data reveal different diffusion systems in separate regions in which residents of Fukushima and neighboring prefectures interacted. Our model also shows that an area in the prefecture's northern interior was dominated by a mix of diffusion processes (contagious and hierarchical), that the southern coastal region was affected by a contagious process, and that other infected areas experienced relocation diffusion.

Conclusion: In addition to enhancing our understanding of epidemics, the spatial-temporal patterns of cholera diffusion offer opportunities for studying regional change in modern Japan. By highlighting the dynamics of regional reorganization, our findings can be used to better understand the formation of an urban hierarchy in late nineteenth century Japan.

Show MeSH
Related in: MedlinePlus