Masks have a chequered history in western fashion. Some silenced women in the name of beauty, others provoked sexual desire.
Policemen in Seattle, Washington, wearing masks made by the Red Cross, during the influenza pandemic, December 1918.
As the US battled the 1918 influenza pandemic, some communities staged contentious battles against wearing masks. Sound familiar?
Donald Trump is no Winston Churchill and the coronavirus pandemic is not like a world war.
(AP Photo/Tim Ireland)
It's always dangerous to put present-day events into historic perspectives. That's especially true when political leaders have compared the coronavirus pandemic to a war effort.
A list of rules from the U.S. Public Health Service in 1918 to reduce the chances of contracting or spreading the devastating flu pandemic.
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How politicians and the public in Denver, Colorado handled the 1918 flu epidemic is relevant to today.
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Australia's island identity and attitude to border security was forged from handling pandemics since the time of federation. Here's what we've learned along the way.
Gravediggers in Brazil’s Vila Formosa cemetery in Sao Paulo, exhume old graves to make way for more victims of COVID-19.
Plagues and flu pandemics of the past have led to long-term disadvantages for those affected, and increased prejudice.
The World Health Organization estimates that 117 million people worldwide may have missed a vaccination during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Children may have fallen behind on their vaccination schedules during the pandemic, increasing the risk that COVID-19 may be followed by outbreaks of once-eradicated diseases.
National Museum of Australia
There are many similarities between Spanish flu and coronavirus, from school closures to mask debates. The story of 1919 also shows governments face choices that can have a terrible cost in lives.
A bottle of Covid Organics, a herbal tea that authorities in Madagascar gave to students.
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Authorities around the world can do more to ensure that correct information and messages on the pandemic reach everybody.
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Some 1,500 years ago, the Plague of Justinian spread via ships from North Africa to Europe and Asia, killing up to 50 million people.
Red Cross nurses in San Francisco, 1918.
Over 30 countries today are making people wear masks in public, despite serious doubts from scientists.
Economists are using models to try to determine what short- and long-term impacts the coronavirus pandemic will have on the global economy.
(AP Photo/Koji Sasahara)
As countries get ready to re-open their economies, will there be a post-pandemic recovery? History and current economic models suggest those looking for a quick rebound will be disappointed.
The Trump administration was not alone with its slow response to the COVID-19 crisis.
Getty Images / White House Pool
Human beings have difficulty assessing distant threats.
As Spanish flu ravaged the world in 1919, Australians found novel ways to commemorate Anzac Day, and they will do so again this year.
Kenya’s government have issued a directive that people must wear masks while in public places.
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In Kenya, the Spanish flu caused various forms of social and economic disruption, ranging from social distancing to the suspension of nonessential services and widespread food shortages.
Cremation on the banks of the Ganges river, India.
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When the 1918 influenza pandemic struck India, the death toll was highest among the poor.
Wikimedia/Pierart dou Tielt
The 14th century Black Death pandemic catalysed enormous societal, economic, artistic and cultural reforms in Medieval Europe. Infectious disease pandemics can be major turning points in history.
Inscriptions on the Stanley Cup shows no winner was declared in 1919 when the final series between Montréal and Seattle was cancelled because of the flu pandemic.
THE CANADIAN PRESS/Adrian Wyld
The Stanley Cup hockey finals were cancelled mid-series in 1919 because of the flu pandemic. Unlike a century ago, the NHL has put player health ahead of profit when dealing with the coronavirus pandemic.
Prince Charles and the Duchess of Cornwall had been performing royal duties until he tested positive for COVID-19.
Yui Mok/PA Wire/PA Images
The pandemic makes it hard for the royal family to act as national figureheads as they have in past crises.
HIV activists in Khayelitsha, Cape Town, South Africa in 2004. Solidarity and organisation were key in fighting HIV stigma.
Gideon Mendel/Corbis via Getty Images
The agents causing illness do not care for our assumptions about our alleged superiority on the planet, nor do they discriminate.