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Divergent Rationalities and Contending Interests: Public Health in Wellington County Townships, 1882-1900

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Title: Divergent Rationalities and Contending Interests: Public Health in Wellington County Townships, 1882-1900
Author: Hodgkinson, Victoria
Department: Department of History
Program: History
Advisor: Wilson, Catharine A.
Abstract: This thesis provides an overview of Ontario rural municipalities’ response to the province-wide application of the Public Health Act in 1882. It uses Wellington County townships’ experience during the years 1882 to 1900 as a case study to illuminate the factors informing resistance. The paper argues that the townships fashioned their own approach to public health that aligned with local interests and reflected their rural communities’ distinctive views about healthfulness. It identifies three key elements that shaped townships’ response: first, a belief that a rural lifestyle was inherently healthy and could best be preserved by thwarting the ills of urban living; second, a strong preference for minimal government interference in the private affairs of households and local businesses; third, a skeptical outlook toward the utility and efficacy of new medical concepts and health technologies until they were proven to be beneficial.
URI: http://hdl.handle.net/10214/16103
Date: 2019-05
Rights: Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International
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Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International Except where otherwise noted, this item's license is described as Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International